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Introductory Notes

When interpreting the facts in this research, it is important to realize that association does not prove causation. This is because numerous factors can affect crime levels, and there is frequently no objective way to identify, measure, and determine the interplay between all of them.

This research is based upon the most recent available data in 2022. Facts from earlier years are cited based upon availability and relevance, not to slant results by singling out specific years that are different from others. Likewise, data associated with the effects of gun control laws in various geographical areas represent random, demographically diverse places in which such data is available.

Many aspects of the gun control issue are best measured and sometimes can only be measured through surveys,[1] but the accuracy of such surveys depends upon respondents providing truthful answers to questions that are sometimes controversial and potentially incriminating.[2] Thus, Just Facts uses this data critically, citing the best-designed surveys we find, detailing their inner workings in our footnotes, and using the most cautious plausible interpretations of the results.

When dealing with wide-ranging data, the determination of what constitutes a credible fact (and what does not) can be subjective. It is our mission to minimize subjectivity and publish highly factual content. Therefore, we are taking the additional step of providing readers with four examples to illustrate the types of statistics we excluded because they did not meet Just Facts’ Standards of Credibility.

Definitions

General

* A “firearm” or “gun” is a weapon that fires projectiles or bullets using an explosive substance like gunpowder.[3] [4] [5]

* Firearms can be broadly categorized according to their style. Common styles include:

  • handguns, which are designed to be held and fired with one hand.[6]
  • rifles, which:
    • are typically held with two hands while part of the gun is braced against the shoulder.[7] [8]
    • have long barrels with spirally grooved interiors that spin the bullet as it travels to increase long-distance accuracy.[9]
  • carbines, which are lightweight, short-barreled rifles.[10] [11] [12]
  • shotguns, which:
    • are typically held with two hands and braced against the shoulder.[13] [14]
    • unlike rifles, have barrels with smooth interiors and fire a cluster of metal balls or one large projectile.[15] [16]
  • machine guns, which:
    • are typically secured to a mount, such as a tripod, and shot from a fixed position.[17] [18]
    • can fire repeatedly for as long as the trigger is held or until it either overheats or runs out of ammunition.[19] [20]
    • are generally prohibited from civilian ownership under federal law with strict exceptions for those that were legally owned before 1986.[21] [22] [23] [24] [25] [26] [27]
  • submachine guns, which are hybrids of handguns, rifles, and machine guns that:
    • are typically fired from the shoulder or hip while gripped with two hands.[28] [29]
    • shoot handgun ammunition through a short barrel.[30] [31]
    • can fire at the rate of a machine gun.[32] [33]
    • are generally prohibited from civilian ownership under federal law with strict exceptions for those that were legally owned before 1986.[34] [35] [36] [37]

* Firearms can also be categorized according to their loading and firing mechanisms, or their “actions.”[38] [39] Common types of action include:

  • automatic, which fires multiple shots with a single pull of the trigger.[40] These are generally prohibited from civilian ownership under federal law with strict exceptions for those that were legally owned before 1986.[41] [42] [43] [44]
  • semi-automatic, which fires one bullet each time the trigger is pulled, ejects the empty shell, and automatically loads another round for the next pull of the trigger.[45]
  • manual, which fires one bullet each time the trigger is pulled, but—unlike semi-automatic—does not eject the empty shell and automatically load another round.[46] [47]

Ammunition

* Firearm ammunition is a combination of materials—generally metals and explosives—loaded into a gun and fired.[48] [49] [50] [51]

* A single unit of ammunition is called a “round,” or “cartridge.” People often mistakenly call this a bullet, but that is only one part of a round.[52] [53]

* A round has the following major components:

  • the bullet or projectile, which is the object that is fired out of the gun[54] [55] [56] [57]
  • the gunpowder or propellant, which is the substance that, when ignited, generates a cloud of hot gas that fires the bullet[58] [59] [60]
  • the primer, which is a flammable substance that ignites the gunpowder when struck[61] [62]
  • the shell or casing, which is a thin metal container that holds the bullet, gunpowder, and primer in place[63]

One Round

One Round or Cartridge

* Caliber is a measurement of a bullet’s diameter, usually in inches (as in .22 caliber) or millimeters (as in 9 mm).[64] Bullets with a higher caliber are generally more lethal.[65]

* Gauge is a measurement of a shotgun’s barrel that determines its size and power. The gauge number (e.g. 12-gauge) represents the amount of spherical balls that could be made with one pound of lead if each ball’s diameter precisely fit the barrel. Therefore, a 12-gauge is bigger than an 18-gauge.[66]

* Bullets typically cause more harm when their velocities increase. Bullet speeds generally increase with:

  • the amount of gunpowder in the round, as more gunpowder produces greater force and faster bullets.
  • the length of the firearm barrel, as longer barrels give the expanding gases more time to accelerate the bullets.[67] [68] [69]

Magazines

* A magazine is a device or place that holds ammunition.[70] There are three main types of magazines:

  1. detachable, which can inserted into a firearm for quick reloading[71] [72] [73]
  2. fixed, which are built into the gun and cannot be removed[74]
  3. rooms or lockers, which store explosives and ammunition of any kind[75] [76]

* A clip is a small device that holds multiple rounds together so they can be quickly loaded into a revolver or magazine.[77] [78] This term is often wrongly applied to a magazine.[79]

Magazine and Clip

[80] [81]

* For facts about magazine capacity and mass shootings, click here.


Handguns

* Handguns are firearms that are designed to be held with one hand.[82] There are three types of handguns:

  1. revolvers, which hold ammunition in a revolving cylinder that rotates between each shot and typically carry five to nine rounds[83]
Revolver

[84]

  1. pistols, which usually hold ammunition in a magazine located in the grip of the gun[85]
Pistol

[86]

  1. derringers, which are pocket-sized handguns that typically hold one or two rounds[87] [88]
Derringer

[89]


Rifles

* Rifles are firearms that have a long barrel with spiraled grooves on the interior, which put a spinning motion on the fired bullet, allowing for high accuracy at long distances.[90] [91]

* Rifles, like shotguns, are a form of “shoulder weapon” because they are stabilized against the shoulder and are typically held with both hands.[92] [93]

* Carbines are a type of rifle that are lighter and have shorter barrels.[94] [95] [96]

Traditional Rifle

Traditional Rifle

[97]

Modern Semi-Automatic Rifle

Modern Rifle

[98]


Shotguns

* Shotguns are firearms that usually fire multiple small metal pellets, also known as “ball shot” or “buck shot” in a single shot.[99]

* A large, single projectile called a “slug” can also be fired from a shotgun.[100]

* Shotguns are most effective at shorter distances and are useful for hunting.[101]

* Shotguns are sometimes called “scatterguns” because they discharge several projectiles in a single blast, hitting a wider area than a single projectile would. This makes it a weapon that does not require precise accuracy and can hit moving targets more easily.[102] [103]

* Short-barreled, or “sawed-off,” shotguns have barrels less than 18 inches in length, which gives the shot a wider spread but decreases velocity.[104] These are federally outlawed, and owning one can result in jail time.[105] [106]

* Shotguns, like rifles, are a form of “shoulder weapon” because they are stabilized against the shoulder and are typically held with both hands.[107] [108]

Shotgun

[109]


Semi-Automatic

* Semi-automatic firearms fire one bullet each time the trigger is pulled, eject the empty shell, and automatically load another round for the next pull of the trigger.[110]

* Semi-automatic guns differ from those that are automatic in that they cannot fire multiple bullets with a single pull of the trigger.[111]


Automatic

* Automatic firearms are capable of firing multiple bullets with a single pull of the trigger. Some of these weapons are “fully automatic” and can fire continuously for as long as the trigger is pulled unless the gun overheats or runs out of ammunition. Other automatic weapons fire a burst of several bullets with each pull of the trigger.[112] [113] [114] [115] [116]

* Military forces typically use automatic firearms.[117] [118] [119]

* Under U.S. federal law, civilian ownership of automatic firearms has been heavily regulated since 1934 and generally prohibited since 1986 with strict exceptions for those that were legally owned before 1986.[120] [121] [122] [123]

* In 2016, the U.S. Department of Justice reported “there is no evidence that” any owner of an automatic firearm was convicted of using one to commit a crime from 2006 through 2014.[124]

* The three main types of automatic firearms are:

  1. machine guns, which:
    • are typically secured to a mount, such as a tripod, and cannot be easily carried around in combat.[125] [126] [127] [128] [129] [130] [131]
    • can fire large amounts of ammunition via a belt that holds the rounds.[132]
  2. submachine guns, which:
    • are easily carried and are not normally mounted.[133]
    • shoot handgun ammunition via a magazine that holds the rounds.[134] [135]
    • are typically fired from the shoulder or hip while gripped with two hands.[136] [137]
    • are often called machine pistols because they are relatively short in length.[138] [139]
  3. assault rifles, which:
    • are the most common firearms used by military forces and terrorists.[140] [141] [142]
    • are easily carried and not normally mounted.[143] [144]
    • store ammunition in a detachable magazine that typically holds about 30 rounds.[145] [146]
    • often have a feature called “selective-fire” that lets the shooter switch between two different modes of action. The first mode is usually semi-automatic, and the second is either fully automatic or a three-round burst.[147] [148] [149] [150]

Machine Gun

Machinegun

[151]

Assault Rifle

Assault Rifle

[152]


“Assault Weapons” / “Sporting Rifles”

* “Assault weapons,” a term often used by journalists and politicians,[153] [154] [155] are semi-automatic guns that share some characteristics with military firearms but lack their defining feature: the ability to fire multiple bullets with a single trigger pull. Instead, these guns can fire only one bullet with each pull of the trigger.[156] [157] [158] [159] [160] [161]

* AR-15s, which are often deemed “assault weapons,”[162] [163] [164] are a class of semi-automatic rifles that can be legally purchased in most states.[165] Per the U.S. Army:

America’s most popular rifle—the AR-15—is often portrayed as being something it is not. Probably one of the more popular myths is that the “AR” stands for “assault rifle” or “automatic rifle.” It actually stands for “Armalite Rifle,” after the company that developed it in the 1950s.[166] [167]

* Firearm specialists generally object to calling AR-15s and other semi-automatic guns “assault weapons.” This is because they are used for hunting and home defense and because the phrase “assault weapons” sounds similar to “assault rifles,” the most-common type of automatic military firearm.[168] [169] [170] [171] Instead, firearm specialists typically describe these semi-automatic weapons:

  • as “modern sporting rifles,”
  • by their make/model (like “AR-15”), or
  • with functional descriptors like “semi-automatic rifle.”[172] [173] [174]

* For more facts about the debate over the terminology applied to these weapons, click here.

* As of 2020, more than 19.8 million modern semi-automatic rifles were in circulation.[175]

* Compared with older firearm designs, modern semi-automatic rifles have features that sometimes include, but are not limited to:

  • low recoil, which enhances steadiness and accuracy while shooting.[179] [180]
  • elevated sights, which reduce neck-strain by allowing the shooter’s head to be upright while taking aim.[181]
  • flash suppressors, which eliminate harsh light that appears at the tip of the barrel from exploding gunpowder. (Such light can obstruct the shooter’s line of sight when firing or expose his location in the dark.)[182] [183] [184] [185] [186]
  • a pistol grip, which makes the gun “comfortable and adaptable” to most hand sizes.[187] [188] [189]
  • a folding or telescoping stock, which makes the weapon more concealable and transportable by allowing its length to be adjusted.[190] [191] [192]

Folding Stock

Folding Stock

[193]

* For facts about the use of such firearms in mass shootings, click here.

Ownership

* In the United States during 2019, civilians and domestic law enforcement owned about 437 million firearms, or an average of 1.3 firearms per person.[194] This has increased from 0.8 firearms per person in 1986:

Guns Owned by U.S. Civilians and Law Enforcement

[195]

* Handguns comprised 57% of all new guns sold to civilians and law enforcement in 2019, which is an increase from 35% in 2000:[196]

Handguns as a Portion of New Firearms Sold to U.S. Civilians and Law Enforcement

[197]

* Based upon national surveys, the following are estimates of private firearm ownership in the U.S. from 2016 to 2021:

Households With a Gun

Adults Owning a Gun

Portion

31–49%

21–36%

[198] [199] [200]

* A Gallup poll conducted in 2020 found the following levels of self-declared gun ownership among different groups of people:

Group

Portion Owning a Firearm

Male

45%

Female

19%

White

38%

Nonwhite

18%

Republican

50%

Independent

29%

Democrat

18%

[201] [202] [203]

* In a 2019 Gallup poll, gun owners stated they own firearms for the following reasons:

Reason

Portion

Protection Against Crime

63%

Hunting

40%

Recreation/Target Shooting

15%

[204]

Crime and Self-Defense

General

* Roughly 24,493 people were murdered in the United States during 2021, and 23,551 were murdered in 2020.[205] [206]

* Among people murdered in 2020, about 79% or 18,576 were murdered with firearms.[207]

* In 1995, the Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology published the results of a 1993 nationwide survey of 4,977 households. It found that over the previous five years, at least 0.5% of households had members who had used a gun for defense during a situation in which they thought someone “almost certainly would have been killed” if they “had not used a gun for protection.” This amounts to 162,000 such incidents per year and excludes all “military service, police work, or work as a security guard.”[208]

* Based on survey data from the U.S. Department of Justice, roughly 5.0 million violent crimes (not including murder) were committed in the United States during 2020.[209] [210] These include simple/aggravated assaults, robberies, sexual assaults, rapes, and murders.[211] [212] Of these, about 436,000 or 9% were committed by offenders visibly armed with a gun.[213]

* Based on survey data from a 2000 study published in the Journal of Quantitative Criminology,[214] U.S. civilians use guns to defend themselves and others from crime at least 989,883 times per year.[215]

* Based on data from a 1993 survey published in the Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, at least 3.5% of households had members who had used a gun “for self-protection or for the protection of property at home, work, or elsewhere” over the previous five years. This amounts to 1,029,615 such incidents per year and excludes all “military service, police work, or work as a security guard.”[216]

* A 1994 survey conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that Americans use guns to frighten away intruders who are breaking into their homes about 498,000 times per year.[217]

* In 2013, President Obama ordered the Department of Health and Human Services and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to “conduct or sponsor research into the causes of gun violence and the ways to prevent it.”[218] The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention asked the Institute of Medicine and National Research Council to “convene a committee of experts to develop a potential research agenda focusing on the public health aspects of firearm-related violence….”[219] This committee studied the issue of defensive gun use and reported:

  • “Defensive use of guns by crime victims is a common occurrence, although the exact number remains disputed….”[220]
  • “Almost all national survey estimates indicate that defensive gun uses by victims are at least as common as offensive uses by criminals, with estimates of annual uses ranging from about 500,000 to more than 3 million….”[221]
  • “[S]ome scholars point to a radically lower estimate of only 108,000 annual defensive uses based on the National Crime Victimization Survey,” but this “estimate of 108,000 is difficult to interpret because respondents were not asked specifically about defensive gun use.”[222] [223]
  • “Studies that directly assessed the effect of actual defensive uses of guns (i.e., incidents in which a gun was ‘used’ by the crime victim in the sense of attacking or threatening an offender) have found consistently lower injury rates among gun-using crime victims compared with victims who used other self-protective strategies….”[224]

* A 1982 survey of male felons in 11 state prisons across the U.S. found:

  • 34% had been “scared off, shot at, wounded, or captured by an armed victim.”
  • 40% had decided not to commit a crime because they “knew or believed that the victim was carrying a gun.”
  • 69% personally knew other criminals who had been “scared off, shot at, wounded, or captured by an armed victim.”[225]

* For articles from Just Facts about how certain media outlets have misled the public about the frequency of defensive gun use, click here, here, here, and here.

* Click here to see why the following commonly cited statistic does not meet Just Facts’ Standards of Credibility: “In homes with guns, the homicide of a household member is almost 3 times more likely to occur than in homes without guns.”


Vulnerability to Violent Crime

* If the U.S. murder rate remains at the same level as in 2021, one in every 179 people in the U.S. will eventually be murdered.[226]

* In 1964, roughly 16% of recorded aggravated assaults with a firearm resulted in death. By 1999, this figure fell to about 5%. Per a 2002 paper in the journal Homicide Studies:

  • The “principal explanation” for this “downward trend in lethality” is improvements “in medical technology and related medical support services,” such as increased numbers of “local and county hospitals throughout the nation.”
  • One of the “greatest lethality drops” occurred immediately after the Vietnam War because the experience of this conflict led to major advances in trauma care.
  • Medical progress has “suppressed the homicide rate compared to what it would be had such progress not been made.”[227]

* A U.S. Justice Department study based on crime data from 1974 to 1985 found:

  • 42% of Americans will be the victim of a completed violent crime (assault, robbery, or rape) in the course of their lives.
  • 83% of Americans will be the victim of an attempted or completed violent crime.
  • 52% of Americans will be the victim of an attempted or completed violent crime more than once.[228]

* A 1997 survey of more than 18,000 prison inmates found that among those serving time for a violent crime, “30% of State offenders and 35% of Federal offenders carried a firearm when committing the crime.”[229]

* A 2016 survey of about 25,000 prison inmates found that about “21% of all state and federal prisoners” reported having a firearm during the commission of the crime for which they were incarcerated.[230] [231]


Criminal Justice System

* Nationwide in 2019, law enforcement agencies reported that 52% of aggravated assaults, 31% of robberies, 33% of rapes, and 61% of murders that were reported to police resulted in an alleged offender being identified and acted upon by the criminal justice system.[232] [233]

* In the United States, the portion of murders in which a suspect is identified and acted upon by the criminal justice system declined from 92% in 1960 to 54% in 2020.[234] [235] [236] In some cities like Chicago, this figure has been as low as 25%.[237]

* From 1980 to 2008, 185,000 murders were committed in the U.S. that were still unsolved as of 2010.[238] [239] Some of the factors associated with unsolved murders include:

  • the nature of relationships between perpetrators and victims, as cases involving the murder of strangers are more difficult to solve.
  • police practices and resources, which are stretched thin in neighborhoods with high crime rates.
  • lack of witness cooperation due to fear of reprisal or hostility towards police.[240]

* For every 2.6 aggravated assaults committed during 2019, one person was arrested for committing such a crime.[241] [242] [243] [244]

* For every 15 aggravated assaults, robberies, sexual assaults, rapes, and murders committed in the United States during 2006, approximately one person was sentenced to prison for committing such a crime.[245] [246] [247]

* A 2018 U.S. Justice Department study found that the median amount of time served in prison for:

  • all violent crimes but murder was 2.2 years
  • all violent crimes was 2.4 years.
  • murder was 13.4 years.[248]

* A 2021 U.S. Justice Department study of 408,300 former state prisoners released from state prisons in 2012 found that within five years of their release:

  • 71% were arrested for committing a new offense.
  • 46% were imprisoned for committing a new offense or probation violation.
  • these individuals were arrested 1,113,000 times, an average of 2.7 arrests per released prisoner.
  • 28% were arrested for committing a new violent offense.
  • 97% of those arrested were detained for an offense other than a probation or parole violation.
  • they were arrested for an estimated 3,266 new homicides, 5,716 new rapes/sexual assaults, 19,598 new robberies, and 88,192 new assaults.[249]

* A 2014 U.S. Justice Department study of 404,638 convicts released from state prisons in 2005 found that within five years of their release:

  • 77% were arrested for committing a new offense.
  • 55% were imprisoned for committing a new offense or probation violation.
  • 29% were arrested for committing a new violent offense.
  • these former inmates were arrested for an estimated 3,642 new homicides, 6,879 new rapes/sexual assaults, 22,255 new robberies, and 93,067 new assaults.[250]

* A 2018 update of the study mentioned above dealt with the 401,288 convicts who were still alive. It found that within nine years of their release from prison:

  • 83% were arrested for committing a new offense.
  • these individuals were arrested nearly 2 million times, an average of 5 arrests per released prisoner.
  • 99% of those arrested were detained for an offense other than a probation or parole violation.
  • 95% of those arrested within one year of release were arrested again in subsequent years.
  • 82% of those arrested were arrested within the first three years of their release.
  • released property offenders were more likely to be arrested than released violent offenders.[251]

* A 2021 U.S. Justice Department study of 408,300 former state prisoners determined that within five years of their release:

  • 71% were arrested for committing a new offense.
  • 46% were imprisoned for committing a new offense or probation violation.
  • they accounted for 1,113,000 new arrests, 2.7 per prisoner.
  • 28% were arrested for committing a new violent offense.
  • 97% of those arrested were detained for an offense other than a probation or parole violation.
  • they were arrested for an estimated 3,266 new homicides, 5,716 new rapes/sexual assaults, 19,598 new robberies, and 88,192 new assaults.[252]

* Of 1,662 murders committed in New York City during 2003 to 2005, more than 90% of the known killers were people with criminal records.[253] [254]

* In 2019, Baltimore, Maryland experienced the highest per-capita murder rate in its history. Among the suspects arrested for homicide:

  • 81% had prior criminal records.
  • 52% were previously arrested for violent crimes.
  • 27% were on parole and probation.
  • they were previously arrested an average of eight times.[255] [256] [257] [258]

Washington, DC

* In 1976, the Washington, D.C. City Council passed a law generally prohibiting residents from possessing handguns and requiring that all firearms in private homes be (1) kept unloaded and (2) rendered temporally inoperable via disassembly or installation of a trigger lock. The law became operative on Sept. 24, 1976.[259] [260]

* On June 26, 2008, the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5 to 4 ruling, struck down this law as unconstitutional.[261]

* During the periods before, during, and after this law, the FBI’s estimated murder rates in Washington, D.C. and the entire United States varied as follows:

Murder Rates in Washington, DC and the United States

[262] [263] [264]


Britain

* In 1920, Britain passed a law requiring civilians to obtain a certificate from their district police chief in order to purchase or possess any firearm except a shotgun. To obtain this certificate, the applicant had to pay a fee, and the chief of police had to be “satisfied” that the applicant had “good reason for requiring such a certificate” and did not pose a “danger to the public safety or to the peace.” The certificate had to specify the types and quantities of firearms and ammunition that the applicant could purchase and keep.[265]

* In 1968, Britain made the 1920 law stricter by requiring civilians to obtain a certificate from their district police chief in order to purchase or possess a shotgun. In 1988, this law was amended to require that firearm certificates specify the identification numbers (“if known”) of all firearms and shotguns owned by the applicant.[266]

* In 1997, Britain passed a law requiring civilians to surrender almost all privately owned handguns to the police. More than 162,000 handguns and 1.5 million pounds of ammunition were “compulsorily surrendered” by February 1998. Using “records of firearms held on firearms certificates,” police accounted for all but eight of all legally owned handguns in England, Scotland, and Wales.[267]

* During the periods before and after these laws, murder rates in England and Wales varied as follows:

Homicides Reported by Police in England and Wales

[268] [269]


Chicago

* In 1982, the city of Chicago instituted a ban on handguns. This barred civilians from possessing handguns except for those registered with the city government prior to enactment of the law. The law also specified that such handguns had to be re-registered every two years or owners would forfeit their right to possess them. In 1994, the law was amended to require annual re-registration.[270] [271] [272]

* In the wake of Chicago’s handgun ban, at least five suburbs surrounding Chicago instituted similar handgun bans. When the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the District of Columbia’s handgun ban in June 2008, at least four of these suburbs repealed their bans.[273] [274] [275] [276] [277]

* In June 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled (5 to 4) that Chicago’s ban was unconstitutional.[278] Thereafter, Chicago adopted gun ordinances that required licensees to have firearm range training but prohibited firing ranges within the city.[279] After an unfavorable federal court ruling, Chicago revised its regulations to permit firing ranges within the city, subject to “comprehensive” regulations.[280] As of January 2022, there were no firing ranges within the city limits.[281]

* In December 2012, a federal appellate court ruled that an Illinois law largely banning concealed carrying of firearms was unconstitutional.[282]

* In July 2013, the State of Illinois passed a law that permits concealed carrying of handguns.[283] By the end of 2014, nearly 91,700 concealed carry permits had been issued in the state, and 26% of these permits were issued in Cook County, which includes Chicago.[284]

* During the periods before, during, and after these laws, the FBI’s estimated murder rates in Chicago and the entire United States varied as follows:

Murder Rates in Chicago and the United States

[285] [286] [287]

* During the periods before and after the handgun ban became effective, the portion of murders committed with handguns in Chicago varied as follows:

Portion of Chicago Murders Committed with Handguns

[288] [289]

Background Checks and Criminals’ Sources of Guns

General

* Federal laws restrict gun ownership, transfers, and sales in the following situations and others:

  • It is illegal and punishable by up to 10 years in prison for the following people to receive, possess, or transport any firearm or ammunition:
    • “someone convicted of or under indictment for a felony punishable by more than one year in prison”
    • “someone convicted of a misdemeanor punishable by more than two years in prison”
    • “a fugitive from justice”
    • “an unlawful user of any controlled substance”
    • “someone who has been ruled as mentally defective or has been committed to any mental institution”
    • “an illegal alien”
    • “someone dishonorably discharged from the military”
    • “someone who has renounced his or her U.S. citizenship”
    • “someone subject to certain restraining orders”
    • “someone convicted of a domestic violence misdemeanor”[290] [291] [292] [293]
  • It is illegal and punishable by up to 10 years in prison to sell or transfer any firearm or ammunition to someone while “knowing” or having “reasonable cause to believe” this person falls into any of the prohibited categories listed above.[294] [295]
  • It is illegal to “engage in the business of importing, manufacturing, or dealing in firearms” without a federal license to do so.[296] [297] [298]
  • It is illegal for any federally licensed firearms business to sell or transfer any firearm without first conducting a background check to see if the buyer/recipient falls into any of the prohibited categories listed above.[299] [300]
  • It is illegal for anyone except a federally licensed firearms business to sell, buy, trade, or transfer a firearm across state lines.[301]

* Under federal law, private individuals are not required to a conduct a background check before selling or transferring a firearm to someone who lives in the same state, but it is illegal and punishable by up to 10 years in prison for a private individual to sell or transfer a firearm while “knowing” or having “reasonable cause to believe” that the recipient falls into one of the prohibited categories above.[302] [303]

* Some states such as California require background checks for all firearms transactions, including those conducted between private individuals.[304] [305] [306]

* A 2016 survey of state and federal prisoners who possessed guns during crimes for which they were jailed found that they obtained them from the following sources:

  • 43.2% through an illegal/street source
  • 25.3% through family or friends
  • 7.5% at a gun store
  • 1.6% at a pawnshop
  • 0.8% at a gun show
  • 0.4% at a flea market.[307] [308]

* A study of crimes committed with firearms in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania during 2008 showed that 18% of the perpetrators lawfully owned the gun, and 79% were not legal gun owners.[309]


Denials

* From the inception of the federal background check system in 1998 to 2019, about 333 million background checks for gun purchases were processed through the FBI’s background check system. Of these, approximately 1.7 million or 0.5% were denied.[310]

* During 1998 to 2019, background check denials were made for the following reasons:

Federal Background Check Denial Reasons

[311]

* During 2017, the federal government:

  • conducted 8.6 million firearm background checks resulting in over 112,000 denials.
  • prosecuted 12 people based on these denials.
  • obtained 8 guilty pleas, or less than 0.01% of the denials.[312]

* Between 2006 and 2010, federal background-check denial:

  • investigations decreased by nearly 50%.
  • prosecutions decreased by about 77%.
  • guilty pleas and verdicts decreased by about 82%.[313]

* States may prosecute cases that the federal government does not. In 2010, Pennsylvania convicted more than 100 individuals for state law violations arising out of firearm background check denials.[314]

* If an FBI background check takes longer than three days, the gun sale is approved by default.[315] This is how Dylann Roof, the killer of nine people at a black church in South Carolina in 2015,[316] [317] was able to buy a gun despite having a police record that included drug possession.[318]

* In 2010, the FBI referred 2,000 to 3,000 cases of post-gun sale denials to the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) for further action.[319] The ATF retrieved guns in 1,157 cases.[320]

* According to a 2014 Government Accountability Office report, the ATF “does not have information readily available to systematically track the timeliness and outcomes—such as if a firearm is retrieved—of delayed denial investigations.”[321]

* At a 2013 Senate hearing, a Department of Justice representative stated:

[T]he Department prioritizes prosecuting prohibited persons who actually obtain guns—people who have gotten around the background check system and acquired weapons illegally—rather than those who attempted to purchase a firearm through the background check system but were unsuccessful.[322]

* According to federal agents interviewed in a 2004 U.S. Justice Department investigation, the “vast majority” of denials under the federal background check system are issued to people who are not “a danger to the public because the prohibiting factors are often minor or based on incidents that occurred many years in the past.” As examples of such, agents stated that denials have been issued for:

  • a 1941 felony conviction for stealing a pig.
  • a 1969 felony conviction for stealing hubcaps.[323] [324]

* The same Justice Department investigation audited 200 background check denials and found that 8% of denied applicants were not prohibited from lawfully possessing a firearm.[325]

* In 2010, applicants appealed about 23% of the 72,659 background check denials issued that year. Of these, about 21% were later overturned and the applications approved.[326]


Allowances

* As of February 2022, federal law does not prohibit suspected members of terrorist organizations from purchasing or possessing firearms or explosives.[327] [328] [329]

* Between February 2004 and December 2015, 2,477 firearm and three explosives background checks for people on terrorist watch lists were processed through the federal background check system. Of these, 91% of the firearm transactions and 100% of the explosives transactions were allowed.[330]

* Under federal law, individuals who have been convicted of a felony offense that would typically prohibit them from possessing firearms can lawfully possess firearms if their civil rights are restored by the requisite government entities.[331]


Enforcement

* To undergo a background check, prospective gun buyers are required by federal regulations to present photo-identification issued by a government entity.[332]

* Using fake driver’s licenses bearing fictitious names, investigators with the Government Accountability Office had a 100% success rate buying firearms in five states that met the minimum requirements of the federal background check system.[333] [334] A 2001 report of this investigation states that the federal background check system “does not positively identify purchasers of firearms,” and thus, people using fake IDs are not flagged by the system.[335]


Gun Shows

* Per the U.S. Department of Justice, “A gun show is an exhibition or gathering where guns, gun parts, ammunition, gun accessories, and literature are displayed, bought, sold, traded, and discussed.”[336]

* Roughly 2,000 to 5,200 gun shows take place each year in the United States.[337]

* Per the U.S. Department of Justice, gun shows:

provide a venue for the sale and exchange of firearms by federal firearms licensees (FFLs). … Such shows also are a venue for private sellers who buy and sell firearms for their personal collections or as a hobby. In these situations, the sellers are not required to have a federal firearms license. Although federal firearms laws apply to both FFLs and private sellers at gun shows, private sellers, unlike FFLs, are under no legal obligation to ask purchasers whether they are legally eligible to buy guns or to verify purchasers’ legal status through background checks.[338]

* In the three-year period from October 2003 through September 2006, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) conducted 202 operations at 195 gun shows, leading to 121 arrests and at least 83 convictions.[339]

* A 2016 survey of state and federal prisoners who possessed guns during crimes for which they were jailed found that 0.8% of them obtained their weapons at a gun show.[340] [341]

Right-to-Carry

General

* Right-to-carry laws permit individuals who meet certain “minimally restrictive” criteria (such as completion of a background check and gun safety course) to carry concealed firearms in most public places.[342]

* Concealed carry holders must also meet the federal requirements for gun ownership.

* Each state has its own laws regarding right-to-carry and generally falls into one of three main categories:

  1. “May-issue” states, where applicants must often present a reason for carrying a firearm to an issuing authority, who then decides based on his or her discretion whether the applicant will receive a permit.[343] [344] [345]
  2. “Shall-issue” states, where concealed carry permits are issued to all qualified applicants.
  3. “Constitutional carry” or “permitless carry” states, where everyone who is legally allowed to have a firearm is also free to carry one.[346] [347]

* May-issue states vary significantly in the restrictiveness of their laws. Some, such as Connecticut,[348] effectively act as shall-issue states, while others, such as New Jersey, effectively acted as no-issue states until 2022.[349] Since then, the Supreme Court’s ruling in New York State Rifle & Pistol v. Bruen prohibits states making these laws so restrictive that they violate the right to keep and bear arms.

* As of May 2022:

  • 8 states are may-issue:

California

Connecticut

Delaware

Hawaii

Maryland

Massachusetts

New Jersey

New York

[350]

  • 17 states are shall-issue:

Colorado

Florida

Illinois

Louisiana

Michigan

Minnesota

Nebraska

Nevada

New Mexico

North Carolina

Oregon

Pennsylvania

Rhode Island†

South Carolina

Virginia

Washington

Wisconsin

[351]

† Rhode Island is considered a “hybrid” state, because the law states that local authorities “shall issue … a license or permit” to carry a concealed weapon, but the law also states that the attorney general “may” do so.[352] [353] In practice, the attorney general is the primary issuer of permits.[354]

  • 24 states are Constitutional carry:

Alaska

Arizona

Arkansas

Georgia

Idaho

Indiana

Iowa

Kansas

Kentucky

Maine

Mississippi

Missouri

Montana

New Hampshire

North Dakota

Ohio

Oklahoma

South Dakota

Tennessee

Texas

Utah

Vermont

West Virginia

Wyoming

[355]

  • 1 state will soon become Constitutional carry:

State

Effective Date

Alabama

January 1, 2023

[356]

* Click here to see why the following commonly cited statistic does not meet Just Facts’ Standards of Credibility: In right-to-carry states, the violent crime rate is 24% lower than the rest of the U.S., the murder rate is 28% lower, and the robbery rate is 50% lower.


Florida

* On October 1, 1987, Florida’s shall-issue right-to-carry law became effective.[357]

* This law requires that concealed carry licensees be 21 years of age or older, have clean criminal/mental health records, and complete a firearms safety/training course.[358]

* As of December 31, 2021, Florida had issued 5,211,848 permits and had 2,459,530 active licensees, constituting roughly 15% of the state’s population 21 years of age or older.[359]

* During the periods before and after this law, the FBI’s estimated murder rates in Florida and the entire United States varied as follows:

Murder Rates in Florida and the United States

[360] [361] [362]

* From the outset of the Florida shall-issue right-to-carry law through December 31, 2021, Florida has revoked 17,713 or 0.3% of all issued permits.[363]

* Through July 31, 2010, Florida revoked 5,674 permits. Of these:

  • 522 permits were revoked for crimes committed prior to licensure.
  • 4,955 permits were revoked for crimes committed after licensure, of which 168 involved the usage of a firearm.[364]

Texas

* In January 1996, Texas’s shall-issue right-to-carry law became effective.[365]

* The law requires that licensees be at least 21 years of age (or 18 years of age if a member or veteran of the U.S. armed forces), have clean criminal/mental health records, and complete a handgun proficiency course and examination.[366]

* At the end of 2020, Texas had 1,626,242 active licensees, constituting roughly 8% of the state’s population that is 21 years of age or older.[367]

* During the periods before and after this law, the FBI’s estimated murder rates in Texas and the entire United States varied as follows:

Murder Rates in Texas and the United States

[368] [369] [370]

* On January 1, 2016, Texas became an open-carry state, permitting licensed handgun owners to openly carry a holstered handgun.[371]


Michigan

* On July 1, 2001, Michigan’s shall-issue right-to-carry law became effective.[372]

* This law requires that concealed carry licensees be at least 18 years of age (or 21 years of age if purchasing a handgun from a licensed dealer), have clean criminal/mental health records, and complete a pistol safety course.[373] [374] [375]

* During the periods before and after this law, the FBI’s estimated murder rates in Michigan and the entire United States varied as follows:

Murder Rates in Michigan and the United States

[376] [377] [378]

Mass Shootings

General

* Per the Congressional Research Service and the journal Criminology & Public Policy, a “mass shooting” is a single event in which four or more people are shot to death.[379] [380]

* In the U.S. from 1976 to 2018, an average of 98 people per year were killed in mass shootings. This amounts to 0.5% of all murder victims.[381]

Victims of Mass Shootings in the U.S.

[382] [383]

* Congress imposed tight regulations on automatic firearms in 1934 and then banned them from civilian ownership in 1986 with strict exceptions for those who legally possessed them prior to the law’s enactment.[384] [385] [386] [387] [388] [389] Before, during, and after the prohibition of automatic firearms, the portion of the U.S. population killed in mass shootings varied as follows:

Portion of U.S. Population Killed in Mass Shootings

[390]

* Mass shootings can be categorized into three main types, arranged below from most to least frequent:[391]

  1. Familial, which in most cases is when a man shoots and kills his wife and children in a private home or secluded area.[392] [393]
  2. Concomitant, which is when someone shoots and kills people while engaging in some other form of criminal activity—such as an armed robbery or gang war.[394]
  3. Indiscriminate, in which an attacker wantonly guns down people in a public setting, such as a church, school, or workplace. In these shootings, the killers are not involved in some other form of criminal activity (like a robbery), and the victims are generally unrelated to the perpetrators.[395] [396]

* Among the 237,649 people who were murdered from 1999 to 2013 in the U.S., 1,554 died in mass shootings. Among these mass shooting victims:

  • 37% were familial.
  • 34% were concomitant.
  • 29% were indiscriminate:

Mass Shootings During 1999–2013

Type

Deaths

Incidents

Number

Portion of Mass Shootings

Portion of All Homicides

Number

Portion of Mass Shootings

Familial

576

37%

0.24%

127

40%

Concomitant

532

34%

0.22%

124

39%

Indiscriminate

446

29%

0.19%

66

21%

Total

1,554

100%

0.65%

317

100%

[397] [398]


Media

* While reporting on the prevalence of mass shootings in the United States, various political and research organizations have adopted widely disparate measures.[399] [400] [401] From 2017 to 2021, the total number of mass shootings was:

  • 32 according to the Violence Project—which defines these as incidents when a shooter who is not motivated by “underlying criminal activity” publicly kills at least four victims, most of whom are not his family members.[402]
  • 110 according to Everytown for Gun Safety—which defines these as incidents when four or more people are killed with firearms in any circumstance.[403]
  • 2,405 according to Gun Violence Archive—which defines these as incidents when four or more people are shot, but not necessarily killed, in any circumstance.[404]

* The following journalists and politicians have used the Gun Violence Archive or sources that use similar definitions to make the following claims:

  • “There were more mass shootings than days in 2019.”

– Reporter Jason Silverstein of CBS News, 2020.[405]

  • “Nearly 12,000 Americans have been killed by guns with 273 mass shootings in 2017—one for each day of the year.”

– Nancy Pelosi, Democratic Minority Leader of the U.S. House of Representatives, 2017.[406]

  • “After Sandy Hook, we said never again. And then we let 2,654 mass shootings happen.”

– Reporters German Lopez and Kavya Sukumar of Vox, 2020.[407]

* During the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting, 27 people were killed, including 20 children.[408] Among the 2,654 “mass shootings” cited by Vox:

  • 755 were incidents in which one person was killed.
  • 1,278 were incidents in which no people were killed.[409] [410]

Mental Illness

* Per the journal Criminology & Public Policy, at least 158 people committed indiscriminate mass shootings from 1976 to 2018. Among these perpetrators:

  • 55, or about 35%, suffered from paranoid schizophrenia.
  • 97, or about 61%, “had been either diagnosed with a mental disorder or demonstrated signs of serious mental illness prior to the attack.”[411]

* In 2021, the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology published a study of people who committed a mass shooting from 1982 to 2019 and survived. The study focused on the survivors, as opposed to those who died, because the ensuing legal proceedings revealed “the most reliable psychiatric information.” Among the 35 mass shooters who survived:

  • 80% had a psychiatric diagnosis.
  • 51% had schizophrenia.
  • 9% had a bipolar I disorder.
  • 6% had a delusional disorder.
  • 6% had a personality disorder.
  • 6% had substance-related disorder.
  • 3% had a post-traumatic stress disorder.[412]

* Per the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services:

* Indiscriminate mass shooters are often suicidal. During 1976–2018, 57% of indiscriminate mass shooters committed suicide at the scene or forced the police to take lethal action.[415] This is called “suicide by cop.”[416]

* The process of deinstitutionalization entails moving psychiatric patients out of state institutions and closing the facilities that housed them.[417] Under mass deinstitutionalization that occurred from 1955 to around 2010,[418] the portion of the U.S. population in public psychiatric hospitals declined by 96%:

Portion of U.S. Population in Public Psychiatric Hospitals

[419]

* Per a 1997 academic book about “America’s Mental Illness Crisis”:

  • “The magnitude of deinstitutionalization of the severely mentally ill qualifies it as one of the largest social experiments in American history.”
  • About “763,391 severely mentally ill people (over three-quarters of a million) are living in the community today who would have been hospitalized 40 years ago.”[420]

* In the periods before, during, and after mass deinstitutionalization, the average annual rate of indiscriminate mass shootings in the U.S. changed as follows:

Population-Adjusted Indiscriminate Mass Shooting Incidents Per Year During Specified Date Ranges

[421]

* In 2018, the U.S. had the seventh-lowest psychiatric institutionalization rate among the following developed nations:

Psychiatric Institutionalization Rates in Developed Nations, 2017

[422] [423] [424]


“Assault Weapons”

* “Assault weapons” or “modern sporting rifles” are semi-automatic guns that share some characteristics with military firearms but lack their defining feature: the ability to fire multiple bullets with a single pull of the trigger.[425] [426] [427]

* From 1994 to 2004, a federal law made it illegal to “manufacture, transfer, or possess a semiautomatic assault weapon” or a magazine that holds more than 10 rounds unless it was legally owned prior to the law’s enactment.[428] With regard to this law:

  • The ban was not permanent because lawmakers included a provision to sunset it in 10 years as a compromise to secure enough votes to pass it and to provide time to “investigate and study” its “impact, if any, on violent and drug trafficking crime.”[429] [430]
  • Congress passed the bill with 78% of Democrats voting for it and 75% of Republicans voting against it.[431] Democratic President Bill Clinton signed it into law.[432]
  • The ban did not begin until the last 3.5 months of 1994.[433]
  • Anticipation of the ban stimulated prices, production, and demand for the weapons, producing “the unintended consequence of making AWs [assault weapons] more accessible” through at least mid-1996, per a 2002 paper in the Journal of Quantitative Criminology.[434]
  • Wall-to-wall media coverage of mass shootings—which began during the ban with the Columbine school massacre of 1999—has since motivated copycat killers seeking fame.[435] [436] [437]
  • The same 1994 law contained a large array of measures to reduce violent crime, including incentives for states to increase “the percentage of convicted violent offenders sentenced to prison” and increase “the average prison time which will be served in prison by convicted violent offenders.”[438]
  • The law required the U.S. Attorney General to conduct and publish a study evaluating the effects of the ban within 30 months of its enactment. The study concluded that “the public safety benefits of the 1994 ban have not yet been demonstrated.”[439] [440]
  • Another study funded by the U.S. Department of Justice was published in 2004, the year the law was due to expire. It found that:
    • “we cannot clearly credit the ban with any of the nation’s recent drop in gun violence.”
    • the ban had “no discernible reduction in the lethality and injuriousness of gun violence, based on indicators like the percentage of gun crimes resulting in death or the share of gunfire incidents resulting in injury, as we might have expected had the ban reduced crimes with both AWs [assault weapons] and LCMs [large-capacity magazines].”
    • the effects of the ban “are still unfolding and may not be fully felt for several years into the future,” and so it is “premature to make definitive assessments of the ban’s impact on gun violence.”[441]
  • During the periods before, during, and after the ban, the portion of the U.S. population killed in mass shootings and indiscriminate mass shootings varied as follows:
Portion of U.S. Population Killed in Mass Shootings

[442]

Claims That Mass Shootings Tripled

* In 2022, Democratic President Joe Biden declared that “mass shootings tripled” after the 1994–2004 ban,[443] and a “fact checker” called PolitiFact reported this was “mostly true.”[444] To support this claim, PolitiFact used a 2019 paper published by the Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, which:

  • obscures the details of the study behind a $60 paywall.[445]
  • restricts the count of mass shootings “to incidents reported by all three” of the following sources: “Mother Jones Magazine, the Los Angeles Times and Stanford University.”[446]
  • was dismissed by Dr. Louis Klarevas of Columbia University, a Ph.D. who specializes in mass-casualty violence, for having “a large number of misclassifications.”[447] [448]
  • claims there were zero mass shooting deaths in 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2001, 2002, and 2004, thus excluding a broad range of shootings like:[449]
    • the 1995 Corpus Christi, TX workplace shooting, where a gunman murdered five people.[450]
    • the 1996 Fort Lauderdale, FL workplace shooting, where a gunman murdered five of his former coworkers.[451]
    • the 1997 Orange, CA workplace shooting, where a gunman murdered four people.[452]
    • the 2001 Melrose Park, IL workplace shooting, where a gunman murdered four people.[453]
    • the 2002 Rutledge, AL farm shooting, where a gunman murdered six members of his girlfriend’s family.[454]

Claims That “Assault Weapons” are Mass Murderers’ Weapon Of Choice

* A 2019 study by the Rockefeller Institute of Government—which defines a mass shooting as an event in which an offender indiscriminately shoots at least two people in public—found that from 1966 to 2016:

  • 351 people were killed in “shootings involving an assault-style rifle.”
  • 787 people were killed in “shootings where no such rifle was present.”
  • 5.2 people were killed per shooting when an “assault-style rifle” was used.
  • 2.9 people were killed per shooting when no such rifle was present.[455]

* While citing the above Rockefeller Institute study, Democratic U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein of California claimed that “assault weapons” are “the choice of individuals who want to shoot a large number of people.”[456] The study itself states:

a popular misconception about mass shootings is that assault-style rifles are the preferred weapon of choice for mass shooters.7 Over the past 50 years, handguns were used considerably more frequently than rifles.[457]

Hunting & Self-Defense

* Some scholars, journalists, and politicians have claimed that “assault weapons” or “modern sporting rifles” are not used for hunting or self-defense.[458] [459] [460] With regard to this assertion:

  • A 2011 article in Outdoor Life reports that “autoloaders and AR-style rifles are becoming more common in [hunting] camps and virtually every major manufacturer is producing these guns in calibers heavy enough to drop deer, hogs and bears.”[461]
  • Interviews with eight firearm experts for a 2015 article in the magazine Tactical Life found that three of them use an AR-style rifle for home defense.[462]
  • An AR-15 was used by a former NRA instructor to stop a 2017 church shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas.[463] When reporting on this event:
    • CNN, USA Today, NPR, Business Insider, CBS Chicago, and the New York Times published articles that described the protector’s AR-15 as a gun or rifle.[464] [465] [466] [467] [468] [469]
    • the same media outlets described the killer’s AR-15 as a “military-style rifle.”[470] [471] [472] [473] [474] [475] (Hat tip: Carl Arbogast[476])

Choice of Terminology

* The term “assault weapon” is:

* In 1988, Josh Sugarmann, the founder of a prominent gun control organization, wrote the following about the “new topic” of “assault weapons:”[486] [487]

The weapons’ menacing looks, coupled with the public’s confusion over fully automatic machine guns versus semi-automatic assault weapons—anything that looks like a machine gun is assumed to be a machine gun—can only increase the chance of public support for restrictions on these weapons.[488]

* Prior to the publication of Sugermann’s 1988 booklet about “assault weapons,” Google Book’s library of books and other publications reveals no results that use this term to describe a semi-automatic gun.[489] During the 10 years after Sugermann’s booklet was published:

  • Google Book shows over 25 results that use the term “assault weapon” to describe a semi-automatic gun, including several state and local laws that ban them.[490] [491] [492] [493] [494]
  • U.S. Senator Howard Metzenbaum (D–OH) sponsored a bill named the “Assault Weapon Control Act of 1989” that sought to ban certain semi-automatic weapons but did not pass.[495] [496]
  • U.S. Congressmen Jack Brooks (D–TX) sponsored a 1994 bill—which passed into law—banning the manufacture, transfer, or possession of a “semiautomatic assault weapon” for the next 10 years unless it was legally owned prior to the law’s enactment.[497] [498] [499]

* A 2013 New York Times article alleges “it was the gun industry” that first adopted the term “assault weapon” to increase civilian rifle sales.[500] As evidence of this, the Times cites the cover of a 1981 edition of Guns & Ammo magazine with a headline that reads, “The New Breed of Assault Rifle.”[501] With regard to that claim:

  • the magazine repeatedly distinguishes these new weapons from actual assault rifles by using phrases like “military look-alikes,” “semi-auto sporters,” and “military-type semi-automatic sporting rifles.”[502]
  • the magazine never uses the term “assault weapon.”
  • the New York Public Library Writer’s Guide to Style and Usage and various journalism guidebooks instruct reporters to “use jargon only when necessary and define it carefully” when writing for the general public.[503] [504] [505] [506]
  • Guns & Ammo is a magazine for gun enthusiasts and professionals, not the general public.[507]

* To further support its contention that the gun industry first adopted the term “assault weapon” to describe semi-automatic weapons, the Times quotes:

  • an unsupported claim from a gun dealer who wrote a book published in 2008 that he titled The Gun Digest Buyer’s Guide to Assault Weapons.[508] This was two decades after anti-gun activists began using the phrase “assault weapons.”[509]
  • a snippet from a 1984 advertisement promoting a new magazine named GA Assault Firearms that would be “full of the hottest hardware available today.”[510] The portion of the ad not quoted by the Times states that the magazine will cover “battle rifles, shotguns and assault rifles from the armies of the world.” It adds: “And if you are interested in survival tactics and personal defense, we’ll give you a look at the newest civilianized versions of the semi-auto submachine gun.”[511]

* The Associated Press Stylebook, billed as the “gold standard for news writing,”[512] has changed and reversed its journalism guidelines for “assault weapon” as follows:

  • The 2011 Stylebook states that an “assault weapon” is “a semi-automatic firearm similar in appearance to a fully automatic firearm or military weapon. Not synonymous with assault rifle, which can be used in fully automatic mode.”[513]
  • The 2015 Stylebook  states that the terms “assault weapon” and “assault rifle” are “often used interchangeably,” but “some make the distinction that assault rifle is a military weapon with a selector switch for firing in either fully automatic or semi-automatic mode….”[514]
  • The 2022 Stylebook states:
    • “Avoid assault rifle and assault weapon, which are highly politicized terms that generally refer to AR- or AK-style rifles designed for the civilian market, but convey little meaning about the actual functions of the weapon.”
    • “Instead, seek specific and detailed information from authorities, such as a gun’s make, model, caliber and magazine capacity.”
    • “Where possible, state what the gun does: Authorities say he used a MAC-10 machine pistol, which fires a bullet and quickly reloads every time the trigger is pulled.”[515]

* The following people have described semi-automatic “assault weapons” or “modern sporting rifles” as:

  • “a fully automatic weapon.”
    – President Barack Obama, 2013.[516] [517] [518]
  • “weapons of war.”

– President Joe Biden, 2022.[519]

  • “weapons of war.”
    – Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton, 2016.[520] [521] [522] [523]
  • “weapons of war” and “assault rifles.”
    – Josh Earnest, President Obama’s Press Secretary, 2016.[524] [525] [526]
  • “military-style assault rifles.”
    – Will Drabold, Time, 2016.[527] [528] [529]
  • “assault rifles” that have “widespread availability” in the U.S.
    – Christopher Ingraham, Washington Post, 2016.[530] [531] [532]
  • “an assault rifle.”
    – Evan Perez of CNN, 2016.[533] [534] [535]
  • “weapons of war.”
    – Nick Wing, Huffington Post, 2016.[536] [537] [538]

* A famous George Orwell essay titled “Politics and the English Language” states the following about words that have “no agreed definition”:

Words of this kind are often used in a consciously dishonest way. That is, the person who uses them has his own private definition, but allows his hearer to think he means something quite different.[539] [540]


“High-Capacity” Magazines

* Some states, like NJ,[541] California,[542] and New York,[543] have banned “high-capacity” magazines, which they define as magazines that can hold more than ten rounds.[544] [545]

* The same federal law which banned “assault weapons” from 1994–2004 also banned magazines that can hold more than ten rounds, labeling them as “high capacity.”[546]

* As of 2018, U.S. gun owners possessed about 145 million mags that hold more than 10 rounds. This includes 71.2 million pistol magazines that hold more than 10 rounds and 79.2 million rifle magazines that hold 30 or more rounds.[547] [548]

* The stock magazine for a Glock 19, among the best-selling handguns in the world, holds 15 rounds.[549] [550]

* The stock magazines for standard-issue police firearms commonly hold more than 10 rounds.[551] [552] [553] [554] [555] [556] [557] [558] [559] [560] [561] [562] This is also the case in states that ban civilians from having such mags.[563] [564] [565] [566]

* Regardless of whether one is trying to protect people or harm them, some of the tactical pros and cons of magazine size include the following:

  • Multiple bullets are often needed to hit someone because people involved in real-life shootings often miss.[567] [568] [569]
  • Multiple bullet hits are often needed to stop or kill someone because single bullet wounds often fail to do so.[570]
  • If someone is carrying multiple magazines, they can swap them out in a second or two.[571] [572] [573] [574]
  • Larger mags are bulkier, which can make weapons less concealable and harder to maneuver.[575]
  • Very large mags tend to jam, like the 100-round magazine used by the perpetrator of the 2012 “Dark Knight” movie theater massacre in Aurora, Colorado.[576] [577]

* A 2015 study in the International Journal of Police Science & Management analyzed the shooting accuracy of police recruits at a wide range of distances. It found that the rates at which they hit stationary targets were:

  • 40% for novices.
  • 48% for intermediates.
  • 49% for experts.[578]

* In a 2010 gunfight with a single subject, four New York City officers fired a total of 21 shots, 18 of which missed.[579]

* In 2020, New York City police officers fired 259 shots at 28 people, resulting in 4 non-fatal injuries and 8 deaths.[580]

* In 1989, the Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery published a study of patients treated at a hospital in south central Los Angeles for penetrating chest wounds. The study didn’t include people who died before they reached the hospital and found the fatality rate from gunshot wounds was:

  • 4% for all chest wounds.
  • 1% for non-heart wounds.
  • 25% for heart wounds.[581]

* In 2007, Democratic governor Tim Kaine “created a blue ribbon Review Panel” to assess a 2007 mass shooting on the Virginia Tech campus in which the shooter used both 10- and 15-round magazines. The panel reported that “10-round magazines that were legal would have not made much difference in the incident. Even pistols with rapid loaders could have been about as deadly in this situation.”[582]

* In demonstrations conducted using a pistol with 15-, 10-, and 6-round magazines, an average shooter was able to discharge 30 shots in less than 30 seconds. The specific results, along with results for an experienced shooter, were as follows:

Magazine Capacity

Shooter Time (secs)

Average

Experienced

15

23

21

10

26

18

6

27

21

[583] [584]

* In demonstrations conducted using an AR-15 with 20- and 10-round magazines, an average shooter was able to discharge 20 shots in less than 15 seconds. The specific results, along with results for an experienced shooter, were as follows:

Magazine Capacity

Shooter Time (secs)

Average

Experienced

20

12

12

10

15

11

[585] [586]

* In a demonstration conducted using revolvers which hold six rounds and a tactic known as a “New York reload,” an experienced shooter was able to discharge 30 shots in less than 19 seconds.[587] [588]

* Some politicians, scholars, and advocacy organizations have claimed that banning “high-capacity” magazines will reduce the number of lives lost in mass shootings, such as:

  • President Joe Biden[589] [590]
  • Vice President Kamala Harris[591]
  • Stanford Ph.D. economist and lawyer John J. Donohue[592] [593]
  • Columbia University Ph.D. Louis Klarevas[594] [595]
  • The Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence[596] [597]
  • The Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Violence Solutions[598] [599]

* For facts about the frequency of mass shootings deaths before, during, and after the federal ban on “assault weapons” and “high-capacity” magazines, click here.

Suicide

* In the U.S. during 2020:

  • 45,979 people committed suicide, comprising 1.4% of all deaths and 13% of deaths among people aged 10 to 34.[600] [601]
  • 24,292 people committed suicide with a firearm, comprising 0.7% of all deaths and 54% of firearm-related deaths.[602]

* During 2007–2014, the fatality rate of those who attempted suicide via:

  • firearm was 90%.
  • drowning was 56%.
  • hanging was 53%.
  • any method was 8.5%.[603]

* In 2005, the National Academy of Sciences published a review of the research on firearms and violence in the United States that found:

  • nongun owners are at a 0.007% risk of suicide in a given year.
  • gun owners are at a 0.015% risk of suicide in a given year.
  • it is unknown whether gun ownership can be causally linked to the increased risk of suicide for gun owners.
  • “some gun control policies may reduce the number of gun suicides, but they have not yet been shown to reduce the overall risk of suicide in any population.”[604]

* In 2018, the RAND Corporation published an expansive review of the “Research Evidence on the Effects of Gun Policies in the United States.”[605] With regard to background checks and safe-storage laws, the study found “moderate evidence” that they reduce firearm suicides and “limited evidence” that they reduce overall suicides.[606] Concerning a phenomenon called “substitution,” the review found:

The consensus among public health experts is that reducing firearm suicides in contexts where more-lethal means of attempting suicide are unavailable will result in reductions in the total suicide rate…. Nevertheless, it is also clear that some people prevented from attempting suicide with a firearm will substitute another lethal means and successfully end their lives. The rate at which this substitution occurs is not known. Thus, for laws that increase or decrease firearm suicides, the effects on total suicides are likely smaller and harder to detect.[607]

Accidents

Fatal

* In 2020, there were 535 fatal firearm accidents in the United States, constituting 0.3% of 200,955 fatal accidents that year:

Fatal Accidents

[608]

* In 2020, fatal firearm accidents among various age groups ranged from 0.1% to 3.5% of fatal accidents:

Age Group

Fatal Firearm Accidents

Number

Portion of All

Fatal Accidents

<1

1

0.1%

1–4

40

3.5%

5–9

22

3.2%

10–14

30

3.4%

15–24

129

0.9%

25–34

92

0.3%

35–44

65

0.2%

45–54

48

0.2%

55–64

53

0.2%

65+

55

0.1%

[609]


Non-Fatal

* In 2020, there were 29,317 emergency room visits for non-fatal firearm accidents, constituting 0.1% of roughly 21 million emergency room visits for non-fatal accidents that year.

Nonfatal Accident Emergency Room Visits

[610]

* In 2014, emergency room visits for non-fatal firearm accidents resulted in 4,734 hospitalizations, constituting 0.2% of 2.2 million non-fatal accident hospitalizations that year:

Nonfatal Accident Hospitalizations

[611]


Harm vs. Benefit

* In D.C. v Heller, the 2008 Supreme Court ruling striking down Washington D.C.’s handgun ban, Justice Stephen Breyer authored a dissenting opinion that was joined by Justices John Paul Stevens, David Souter, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The opinion states:

First, consider the facts as the legislature saw them when it adopted the District statute. As stated by the local council committee that recommended its adoption, the major substantive goal of the District’s handgun restriction is “to reduce the potentiality for gun-related crimes and gun-related deaths from occurring within the District of Columbia.”
[A]ccording to the committee, “[f]or every intruder stopped by a homeowner with a firearm, there are 4 gun-related accidents within the home.”[612]

* This committee report cites no source or evidence for this statistic.[613]

* A 1994 survey conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that Americans use guns to frighten away intruders who are breaking into their homes about 498,000 times per year.[614]

* According to the CDC, there were about 18,498 gun-related accidents that resulted in death or an emergency room visit during 2001[615] (the earliest year such data is available from the CDC[616]). This is roughly 27 times lower than the CDC’s 1994 estimate for the number of times Americans use guns to frighten away intruders who are breaking into their homes.[617]


Safety

* Per the NRA and other sources, the five critical rules of gun safety are:

  1. Always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction (whether loaded or unloaded).
  2. Always keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.
  3. Always keep the gun unloaded until ready to shoot.
  4. Be aware of what is behind your target.
  5. When handling firearms, never use alcohol or any drug that might impair your awareness or judgment (including prescription drugs).[618] [619] [620]

Politics

Interest Groups

* From the 1990 election cycle through April 2022, gun rights and gun control interest groups reported the following total contributions to federal candidates, national parties, political action committees, and outside spending groups:

Gun Rights

Gun Control

Total Contributions

$69,363,128

$51,684,605

Donations to Democrats

$4,246,748

$25,992,874

Donations to Republicans

$48,898,865

$328,800

[621] [622]

* From the 1990 election cycle through April 2022, gun rights and gun control interest groups reported the following political donations to federal candidates:

Gun Rights

Gun Control

Total Donations

$53,145,613

$26,321,674

Donations to Democrats

$4,246,748

$25,992,874

Donations to Republicans

$48,898,865

$328,800

% to Democrats

8%

99%

% to Republicans

92%

1%

[623] [624]

* In 12 federal election cycles from 2000 to 2022, neither gun rights nor gun control interest groups were among the top 50 interest groups donating to incumbent members of Congress during any of these elections.[625]

* From the 1990 election cycle through April 2022, gun rights and various other interest groups reported the following political contributions to federal candidates:

Federal Political Contributions of Interest Groups

[626]

* For facts about the underreporting of political contributions by unions, visit Just Facts’ research on unions.


Party Platforms

* The Republican Party did not adopt a new platform in 2020.[627] The 2016 Republican Party Platform:

  • voices support for the “right of individuals” to “exercise their God-given right of self-defense for the safety of their homes, their loved ones, and their communities.”
  • praises “the Republican Congress for defending the right to keep and bear arms” by preventing President Obama “from installing a new liberal majority on the Supreme Court.”
  • opposes new laws that would “restrict magazine capacity or ban the sale of the most popular and common modern rifle.”[628]

* The 2020 Democratic Party Platform:

  • states that “gun violence is a public health crisis in the United States.”
  • supports universal background checks and closing “dangerous loopholes….”
  • promises to “ban the manufacture and sale of assault weapons and high capacity magazines.”
  • calls for holding gun companies “responsible for their products, just like any other business….”[629] [630]

Politicians

* The president of the United States appoints justices to the U.S. Supreme Court. These appointments must be approved by a majority of the U.S. Senate.[631]

* Once seated, federal judges serve for life unless they voluntarily resign or are removed through impeachment, which requires a majority vote of the House of Representatives and two-thirds of the Senate.[632]

* Senate rules previously allowed for a “filibuster,” in which a vote to approve a judge or Supreme Court justice could be blocked unless a super-majority of the senators (typically 60 out of 100) agreed to let it take place.[633] [634] [635] These rules were repealed:

  • in 2013 when the Democrat majority voted to eliminate filibusters of all presidential nominees except Supreme Court justices.[636]
  • in 2017 when the Republican majority voted to eliminate filibusters of Supreme Court justices.[637]

* Over the past 30 years, none of the Supreme Court justices appointed by Democrats have ruled that the Second Amendment’s “right of the people to keep and bear Arms” applies to the people. Instead, some have ruled that it only applies to individuals who serve in militias, which they claim are the state National Guard units.[638] [639] [640]

* In 2008, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled (5 to 4) that a Washington, D.C. handgun ban was unconstitutional because it violated the Second Amendment “individual right to keep and bear arms” (more details below).[641] Regarding this decision:

  • Five of the seven justices appointed by Republicans ruled that Americans have an individual right to keep and bear arms.[642] [643]
  • Both of the justices appointed by Democrats and two of the justices appointed by Republicans ruled that Americans do not have an individual right to keep and bear arms.[644] [645]

* In 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled (5 to 4) that a Chicago handgun ban was unconstitutional because it violated the Second Amendment “right to keep and bear arms for the purpose of self-defense” (more details below).[646] Regarding this decision:

  • Five of the six justices appointed by Republicans ruled that Americans have an individual right to keep and bear arms.[647] [648] [649]
  • Three of the three justices appointed by Democrats and one of the six justices appointed by Republicans ruled that Americans do not have an individual right to keep and bear arms.[650] [651] [652]

* The following people have expressed support for the view that Americans have an individual right to keep and bear arms:

  • Supreme Court Justice-designate Ketanji Brown Jackson[653] [654] [655]
  • President Donald Trump[656]
  • U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (Texas)[657]
  • U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (Vermont)[658] [659]
  • Florida Governor Ron DeSantis[660]

* The following people have expressed opposition to the view that Americans have an individual right to keep and bear arms:

Constitution

General

* In the Bill of Rights, which was adopted in 1791, the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states:

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.[668]

* Per an encyclopedia published in 1788:

Militia, in general, denotes the body of soldiers, or those who make a profession of arms.
 
In a more restrained sense, militia denotes the trained bands of a town or country, who arm themselves, upon a short warning, for their own defense. So that, in this sense, militia is opposed to regular or stated troops.[669] [670]

* Dictionaries from the era in which the Second Amendment was written use the term “well-regulated” as a synonym for “orderly” and “methodical.”[671] [672] Publications from this era use this phrase in a range of contexts like:

  • “well-regulated standing army”[673]
  • “well regulated sober spirit”[674]
  • “well regulated hospitals”[675]
  • “well regulated time-pieces”[676]
  • “well regulated states”[677]
  • “well regulated family”[678]
  • “well-regulated diet”[679]

* James Madison:

  • was the primary author of the Bill of Rights.[680]
  • is known as the “Father of the Constitution” for his central role in its formation.[681]
  • was one of three authors of the Federalist Papers, a group of essays published in newspapers and books to explain and lobby for ratification of the Constitution.[682] [683]
  • wrote in in Federalist Paper 46 that a standing federal army would not be able to conduct a coup to take over the nation because it couldn’t field more than 25,000–30,000 men based on the country’s population at the time and:
To these would be opposed a militia amounting to near half a million of citizens with arms in their hands, officered by men chosen from among themselves, fighting for their common liberties, and united and conducted by governments possessing their affections and confidence.
Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached, and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of. Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.[684]

* After the Civil War ended in 1865,[685] the United States adopted the 14th Amendment to the Constitution in 1868, which reads in part:

No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.[686]

* In an 1866 speech introducing the 14th Amendment to Congress, Senator Jacob Howard (R–MI) stated that:

  • the “great object of the first section of this amendment is, therefore, to restrain the power of the States and compel them at all times to respect” the “personal rights guaranteed and secured by the first eight amendments of the Constitution,” including “the right to keep and to bear arms….”
  • those personal rights “are secured to the citizen solely as a citizen of the United States and as a party in their courts.”[687] [688]

* Gun control proponents have argued and some federal courts have ruled that the Second Amendment does not apply to all people of the United States but only to members of militias, which, they assert, are now the state National Guard units.[689] [690] In 2002, a federal appeals court panel ruled that “the people” only “have the right to bear arms in the service of the state.”[691]

* Gun rights proponents have argued and some federal courts have ruled that the Second Amendment recognizes “an individual right to keep and bear arms.”[692] In 2001, a federal appeals court panel ruled that the Second Amendment “protects the right of individuals, including those not then actually a member of any militia or engaged in active military service or training, to privately possess and bear their own firearms….”[693]


D.C. v Heller

* In 1976, the Washington, D.C. City Council passed a law generally prohibiting residents from possessing handguns and requiring that all firearms in private homes be (1) kept unloaded and (2) rendered temporally inoperable via disassembly or installation of a trigger lock.[694] [695]

* In 2003, a police officer named Dick Heller who lived and worked in D.C. sued the District for denying him a license to keep a handgun in his home.[696] [697]

* In 2008, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled (5 to 4) in the case of D.C. v Heller that this law was unconstitutional because it violated the “right of the people to keep and bear arms.”[698]

* In the majority ruling, Justice Scalia (joined by Roberts, Kennedy, Thomas, and Alito) wrote:

The District’s total ban on handgun possession in the home amounts to a prohibition on an entire class of “arms” that Americans overwhelmingly choose for the lawful purpose of self-defense. Under any of the standards of scrutiny the Court has applied to enumerated constitutional rights, this prohibition … would fail constitutional muster.
Similarly, the requirement that any lawful firearm in the home be disassembled or bound by a trigger lock makes it impossible for citizens to use arms for the core lawful purpose of self-defense and is hence unconstitutional.[699]
The Second Amendment is naturally divided into two parts: its prefatory clause and its operative clause. The former does not limit the latter grammatically, but rather announces a purpose. The Amendment could be rephrased, “Because a well regulated Militia is necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.”[700]

* In his dissent, Justice Stevens (joined by Souter, Ginsburg, and Breyer) wrote:

[T]he words “the people” in the Second Amendment refer back to the object announced in the Amendment’s preamble. They remind us that it is the collective action of individuals having a duty to serve in the militia that the text directly protects and, perhaps more importantly, that the ultimate purpose of the Amendment was to protect the States’ share of the divided sovereignty created by the Constitution.
As used in the Second Amendment, the words “the people” do not enlarge the right to keep and bear arms to encompass use or ownership of weapons outside the context of service in a well-regulated militia.[701]

* In his dissent, Justice Breyer (joined by Stevens, Souter, and Ginsburg) wrote:

[The Framers were] unlikely then to have thought of a right to keep loaded handguns in homes to confront intruders in urban settings as central. And the subsequent development of modern urban police departments, by diminishing the need to keep loaded guns nearby in case of intruders, would have moved any such right even further away from the heart of the amendment’s more basic protective ends.[702]

* The Bill of Rights includes two Amendments other than the Second that use the phrase “right of the people”:

Amendment 1: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”[703]
Amendment 4: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”[704]

* In D.C. v Heller, the Supreme Court Justices debated the meaning of the phrase “right of the people” in the Second Amendment. Below are excerpts of this debate:

  • Majority Opinion (Justice Scalia, joined by Roberts, Kennedy, Thomas, and Alito):
The unamended Constitution and the Bill of Rights use the phrase “right of the people” two other times… The Ninth Amendment uses very similar terminology…. All three of these instances unambiguously refer to individual rights, not “collective” rights, or rights that may be exercised only through participation in some corporate body.
Nowhere else in the Constitution does a “right” attributed to “the people” refer to anything other than an individual right.6 What is more, in all six other provisions of the Constitution that mention “the people,” the term unambiguously refers to all members of the political community, not an unspecified subset.[705]
  • Dissenting Opinion (Justice Stevens, joined by Souter, Ginsburg, and Breyer):
The Court also overlooks the significance of the way the Framers used the phrase “the people” in these constitutional provisions. In the First Amendment, no words define the class of individuals entitled to speak, to publish, or to worship; in that Amendment it is only the right peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances, that is described as a right of “the people.” These rights contemplate collective action. While the right peaceably to assemble protects the individual rights of those persons participating in the assembly, its concern is with action engaged in by members of a group, rather than any single individual. Likewise, although the act of petitioning the Government is a right that can be exercised by individuals, it is primarily collective in nature. For if they are to be effective, petitions must involve groups of individuals acting in concert.
As used in the Fourth Amendment, “the people” describes the class of persons protected from unreasonable searches and seizures by Government officials. It is true that the Fourth Amendment describes a right that need not be exercised in any collective sense. But that observation does not settle the meaning of the phrase “the people” when used in the Second Amendment.[706]
  • Majority Opinion (Justice Scalia, joined by Roberts, Kennedy, Thomas, and Alito):
Justice Stevens is of course correct … that the right to assemble cannot be exercised alone, but it is still an individual right, and not one conditioned upon membership in some defined “assembly,” as he contends the right to bear arms is conditioned upon membership in a defined militia. And Justice Stevens is dead wrong to think that the right to petition is “primarily collective in nature.”[707]

McDonald v. Chicago

* In an 1833 Supreme Court case known as Barron v Baltimore, the Court ruled that the rights of the people in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights only had to be respected by the federal government and could be infringed by state governments.[708]

* In the aftermath of the Civil War,[709] the United States adopted the 14th Amendment to the Constitution in 1868, which reads in part:

No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.[710]

* Senator Jacob Howard of Michigan served on the committee that drafted the 14th Amendment, and he introduced it on the floor of the Senate. In this speech, he stated that the “great object” of the first section of the amendment is “to restrain the power of the States and compel them at all times to respect” the “personal rights guaranteed and secured by the first eight amendments of the Constitution” including “the right to keep and to bear arms….”[711]

* In 1982, the city of Chicago instituted a ban on handguns. This ban barred civilians from possessing handguns except for those registered with the city government prior to enactment of the law. The law also specified that such handguns had to be re-registered every two years or owners would forfeit their right to possess them. In 1994, the law was amended to require annual re-registration.[712] [713] [714]

* After the Supreme Court ruled in 2008 that a Washington, D.C. handgun ban violated the Second Amendment in a federal jurisdiction, a 76-year-old man named Otis McDonald and three other Chicago residents sued the city for violating the Second Amendment on a local level.[715] [716]

* In the words of McDonald, who lived in a high-crime neighborhood,[717] he wanted to own a handgun because:

  • “it balances the scales a little bit.”
  • “my house has been broken into three times, my garage twice….”
  • I’m “still feeling not safe even with alarm that goes right into the police department.”
  • “it gives me at least something to feel that they will think twice before they break into my house.”[718]

* On June 28, 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled (5 to 4) that Chicago’s effective ban on handgun possession was unconstitutional.[719]

* In the majority ruling, Justice Alito (joined by Roberts, Scalia, Kennedy, and Thomas) wrote:

In sum, it is clear that the Framers and ratifiers of the Fourteenth Amendment counted the right to keep and bear arms among those fundamental rights necessary to our system of ordered liberty.[720]

* In his concurrence, Justice Thomas wrote:

[An 1876 decision by the Supreme Court] holding that blacks could look only to state governments for protection of their right to keep and bear arms enabled private forces, often with the assistance of local governments, to subjugate the newly freed slaves and their descendants through a wave of private violence designed to drive blacks from the voting booth and force them into peonage, an effective return to slavery. Without federal enforcement of the inalienable right to keep and bear arms, these militias and mobs were tragically successful in waging a campaign of terror against the very people the Fourteenth Amendment had just made citizens.[721]

* In his dissent, Justice Breyer (joined by Ginsburg and Sotomayor) wrote:

[T]he use of arms for private self-defense does not warrant federal constitutional protection from state regulation.[722]

* In his dissent, Justice Stevens wrote:

[T]he strength of the individual’s liberty interests and the State’s regulatory interests must always be assessed and compared.[723]

New York State Rifle & Pistol v. Bruen

* In 1911, the State of New York made it illegal to carry a handgun in public—concealed or not—without a government-issued license.[724]

* In 1913, NY passed a law stating that only people with “proper cause” could receive such a license.[725] [726]

* New York law does not define “proper cause,” so state courts have interpreted it to mean that an individual must demonstrate “a special need for self-protection” that is “distinguishable from that of the general community.”[727]

* Two New York residents, Brandon Koch and Robert Nash, applied for licenses to carry a handgun for self-defense between 2014 and 2017. The government denied their requests because they did not have “proper cause” to carry in public.[728]

* The NY State Rifle & Pistol Association sued the State of New York for violating the people’s right to “keep and bear arms.” The case became known as NY State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen. Kevin Bruen, the superintendent of NY State Police, was one of the officials responsible for enforcing the NY law.[729]

* In 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled (6–3) in the case of NY State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen that New York’s “proper cause” requirement violated the Second and Fourteenth Amendments.[730]

* During oral arguments, Justice Alito asked the attorney for the State of New York if an applicant could receive a license to carry if:

they get off work around midnight, maybe even after midnight. They have to commute home by subway, maybe by bus. When they arrive at the subway station or the bus stop, they have to walk some distance through a high-crime area, and they apply for a license, and they say: Look, nobody has … said I am going to mug you next Thursday. However, there have been a lot of muggings in this area, and I am scared to death.[731]

* The attorney replied that “in general,” that person would not be granted a license unless there is some “particular” threat.[732]

* In the majority ruling, Justice Thomas (joined by Roberts, Alito, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, and Barrett), wrote:

The Second Amendment guaranteed to “all Americans” the right to bear commonly used arms in public subject to certain reasonable, well-defined restrictions.[733]
We know of no other constitutional right that an individual may exercise only after demonstrating to government officers some special need.[734]
New York’s proper-cause requirement violates the Fourteenth Amendment in that it prevents law-abiding citizens with ordinary self-defense needs from exercising their right to keep and bear arms.[735]

* In the dissent, Justice Breyer (joined by Sotomayor and Kagan) wrote:

In my view, when courts interpret the Second Amendment, it is constitutionally proper, indeed often necessary, for them to consider the serious dangers and consequences of gun violence that lead States to regulate firearms.[736]
… I would not strike down the law based only on the pleadings, as the Court does today—without first allowing for the development of an evidentiary record and without considering the State’s compelling interest in preventing gun violence.[737]

* In Bruen, the Supreme Court justices debated whether a law that regulates the Second Amendment is constitutional if it “promotes an important interest.” Below are excerpts of this debate:

  • Majority Opinion (Justice Thomas, joined by Roberts, Alito, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, and Barrett):
[R]eliance on history to inform the meaning of constitutional text—especially text meant to codify a pre-existing right—is, in our view, more legitimate, and more administrable, than asking judges to “make difficult empirical judgments” about “the costs and benefits of firearms restrictions….”[738]
[T]he historical record … does not demonstrate a tradition of broadly prohibiting the public carry of commonly used firearms for self-defense. Nor is there any such historical tradition limiting public carry only to those law-abiding citizens who demonstrate a special need for self-defense.[739]
  • Dissent (Justice Breyer, joined by Sotomayor and Kagan):
[T]he Court wrongly limits its analysis to focus nearly exclusively on history. It refuses to consider the government interests that justify a challenged gun regulation, regardless of how compelling those interests may be.[740]
… I believe the [Second] Amendment allows States to take account of the serious problems posed by gun violence that I have just described. I fear that the Court’s interpretation ignores these significant dangers and leaves States without the ability to address them.[741]
  • Concurrence (Justice Alito):
In light of what we have actually held, it is hard to see what legitimate purpose can possibly be served by most of the dissent’s lengthy introductory section. Why, for example, does the dissent think it is relevant to recount the mass shootings that have occurred in recent years? Does the dissent think that laws like New York’s prevent or deter such atrocities? Will a person bent on carrying out a mass shooting be stopped if he knows that it is illegal to carry a handgun outside the home?[742]
What is the relevance of statistics about the use of guns to commit suicide? Does the dissent think that a lot of people who possess guns in their homes will be stopped or deterred from shooting themselves if they cannot lawfully take them outside?[743]

Footnotes

[1] Paper: “Estimating Intruder-Related Firearm Retrievals in U.S. Households, 1994.” By Robin M. Ikeda (U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and others. Violence and Victims, Winter 1997. Pages 363–372. <www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov>

Page 370:

Obtaining information on the protective use of firearms in an efficient and unbiased manner is difficult. These data can be collected through official records, such as police reports, or through special studies. Police reports are more likely to include events with untoward outcomes. Cross-sectional surveys may also be subject to reporting biases and may not yield a sufficient number of episodes to analyze because these events are rare. Nevertheless, surveys are likely to be the most common investigatory tool because of their simplicity and apparent straightforwardness.

[2] Book: Firearms and Violence: A Critical Review. By the Committee to Improve Research and Data on Firearms and the Committee on Law and Justice, National Research Council of the National Academies. Edited by Charles F. Wellford, John V. Pepper, and Carol V. Petrie. National Academies Press, 2005.

Page 35:

While surveys of firearms acquisitions, possession, and use are of varying quality and scope, they all share common methodological and survey sampling-related problems. The most fundamental of these is the potential for response errors to survey questionnaires. Critics argue that asking people whether they own a firearm, what kind it is, and how it is used may lead to invalid responses because ownership is a controversial matter for one or more reasons: some people may own a firearm illegally, some may own it legally but worry that they may use it illegally, and some may react to the intense public controversy about firearm ownership by becoming less (or even more) likely to admit to ownership (Blackman, 2003).7

7 While in most surveys respondents are provided confidentiality, the concern is still expressed that violations of confidentiality directly or through data mining could lead to the identification of specific respondents in a way that might allow the identification of firearms owners.

[3] Entry: “firearm.” Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary, 2010. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

“a weapon, as a rifle or pistol, from which a projectile is fired by gunpowder.”

[4] Entry: “firearm.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

“A weapon, especially a pistol or rifle, capable of firing a projectile and using an explosive charge as a propellant.”

[5] Entry: “firearm.” Collins English Dictionary (12th edition). HarperCollins Publishers, 2014. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

“(Firearms, Gunnery, Ordnance & Artillery) a weapon, esp a portable gun or pistol, from which a projectile can be discharged by an explosion caused by igniting gunpowder, etc.”

[6] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Handgun…[a] weapon designed to fire a small projectile from one or more barrels when held in one hand with a short stock designed to be gripped by one hand.”

[7] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 13: “Rifle—A firearm that has a rifled barrel and is designed to be fired from the shoulder.”

[8] Guide: “Rifle Marksmanship.” U.S. Marine Corps, October 11, 2012. <www.trngcmd.marines.mil>

Page 6-3:

There are seven factors common to all firing positions that affect the ability to hold the Service rifle steady, maintain sight alignment and sight picture, and control the trigger. …

Forward Hand … The placement of the forward hand affects how much muscular tension must be applied to hold the weapon up, affecting stability of hold.

Page 6-5: “Service Rifle Butt in the Shoulder … Placement of the Service rifle butt firmly in the pocket of the shoulder provides resistance to recoil, helps steady the Service rifle, and prevents the Service rifle butt from slipping during firing….”

Page 6-6: “Grip of the Firing Hand … A firm grip must be established on the pistol grip to enable rearward pressure to be applied to keep the Service rifle butt in the shoulder….”

[9] Entry: “rifle.” Collins English Dictionary (12th edition). HarperCollins Publishers, 2014. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1a: “a firearm having a long barrel with a spirally grooved interior, which imparts to the bullet spinning motion and thus greater accuracy over a longer range”

[10] Entry: “carbine.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

“A lightweight rifle with a short barrel.”

[11] Entry: “carbine.” Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Accessed April 23, 2020 at <www.merriam-webster.com>

Definition 1: “a short-barreled lightweight firearm originally used by cavalry”

Definition 2: “a light short-barreled repeating rifle that is used as a supplementary military arm or for hunting in dense brush”

[12] Entry: “carbine.” Collins English Dictionary (12th edition). HarperCollins Publishers, 2014. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1: “a light automatic or semiautomatic rifle of limited range”

Definition 2: “a light short-barrelled shoulder rifle formerly used by cavalry”

[13] Entry: “shotgun.” Collins English Dictionary (12th edition). HarperCollins Publishers, 2014. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1a: “a shoulder firearm with unrifled bore designed for the discharge of small shot at short range and used mainly for hunting small game”

[14] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page 3-15: “Shoulder weapons are designed to be held with both hands; they are braced against the shoulder to absorb the force of recoil and to improve accuracy.”

[15] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Shotgun … A weapon intended to be fired from the shoulder that uses the energy of the explosive in a fixed shotgun shell to fire through a smooth bore either a number of ball shot or a single projectile for each single pull of the trigger.”

[16] ATF Guidebook – Importation & Verification of Firearms, Ammunition, and Implements of War. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, December 2019. <www.atf.gov>

Page 20: “Shotgun … means a weapon designed or redesigned, made or remade, and intended to be fired from the shoulder, and designed or redesigned and made or remade to use the energy of the explosive in a fixed shotgun shell to fire through a smooth bore either a number of ball shot or a single projectile for each single pull of the trigger.”

[17] Entry: “machine gun.” Collins English Dictionary (12th edition). HarperCollins Publishers, 2014. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1a: “a rapid-firing automatic gun, usually mounted, from which small-arms ammunition is discharged”

[18] Article: “M2A1 Machine Gun Features Greater Safety, Heightened Lethality.” By Kevin Doell. U.S. Army, December 3, 2012. <www.army.mil>

“The original M2 ‘Ma Deuce’ .50 Caliber Machine Gun is a belt-fed, heavy machine gun that mounts on most aircraft and vehicles and can be fired from a tripod. The system is highly effective against light armored vehicles, low- and slow-flying aircraft, boats and enemy personnel.”

[19] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page 3-51: “The machine gun is designed to function automatically as long as ammunition is fed into the gun and the trigger is held to the rear.”

Page 3-4: “Most often feeding is done by a spring-loaded follower in a magazine. However, magazines have a limited capacity that cannot sustain the continuous rate of fire required by machine guns. Therefore, machine gun ammunition is belted, and the rounds are fed to the rear of the chamber by cam and lever action.”

[20] Article: “New Light Machine Gun Aims to ‘SAW’ [Squad Automatic Weapon] Soldiers’ Load.” By Eric Kowal. U.S. Army, November 7, 2011. <www.army.mil>

“The suggested rate of fire for machine guns is three to five round bursts whenever possible, eight to ten round bursts at the most. This gives the gunner time to readjust his aim and helps keep the barrel from overheating as quickly.”

[21] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page 3-51: “The machine gun is designed to function automatically as long as ammunition is fed into the gun and the trigger is held to the rear.”

Page 3-4: “Most often feeding is done by a spring-loaded follower in a magazine. However, magazines have a limited capacity that cannot sustain the continuous rate of fire required by machine guns. Therefore, machine gun ammunition is belted, and the rounds are fed to the rear of the chamber by cam and lever action.”

NOTE: Despite the military’s distinction between machine guns and other automatic weapons like assault rifles, the U.S. Department of Justice considers any automatic firearm to be a machine gun under the National Firearms Act. See the next three footnotes for documentation.

[22] National Firearms Act Handbook. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Revised April 2009. <www.atf.gov>

Page 2:

The [Firearm Owner’s Protection] Act also amended the GCA [Gun Control Act of 1968] to prohibit the transfer or possession of machineguns.7 Exceptions were made for transfers of machineguns to, or possession of machineguns by, government agencies, and those lawfully possessed before the effective date of the prohibition, May 19, 1986.

Pages 94–95:

The term “machinegun” means any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger. The term shall also include the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun, and any combination of parts from which a machinegun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person.

[23] ATF Guidebook—Importation & Verification of Firearms, Ammunition, and Implements of War. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, December 2019. <www.atf.gov>

Page 24: “For the purposes of the National Firearms Act the term Machinegun means … [a]ny weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger.”

[24] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Automatic weapons are considered machineguns subject to the provisions of the National Firearms Act.”

[25] Public Law 99-308: “Firearm Owners’ Protection Act.” 99th U.S. Congress (1985–1986). Signed into law by Ronald Reagan on May 19, 1986. <www.congress.gov>

Section 1. Short Title and Congressional Findings.

(a) Short Title.—This Act may be cited as the “Firearms Owners’ Protection Act”.

(b) Congressional Findings.—The Congress finds that—

(1) the rights of citizens—

(A) to keep and bear arms under the second amendment to the United States Constitution;

(B) to security against illegal and unreasonable searches and seizures under the fourth amendment;

(C) against uncompensated taking of property, double jeopardy, and assurance of due process of law under the fifth amendment; and

(D) against unconstitutional exercise of authority under the ninth and tenth amendments; require additional legislation to correct existing firearms statutes and enforcement policies; and

(2) additional legislation is required to reaffirm the intent of the Congress, as expressed in section 101 of the Gun Control Act of 1968, that “it is not the purpose of this title to place any undue or unnecessary Federal restrictions or burdens on law-abiding citizens with respect to the acquisition, possession, or use of firearms appropriate to the purpose of hunting, trapshooting, target shooting, personal protection, or any other lawful activity, and that this title is not intended to discourage or eliminate the private ownership or use of firearms by law-abiding citizens for lawful purposes.”

Sec. 101. Amendments to Section 921.

Section 921 of title 18, United States Code, is amended— …

(23) The term “machinegun” has the meaning given such term in section 58450)) of the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. 5845(b)). …

Sec. 102. Amendments to Section 922.

Section 922 of title 18, United States Code, is amended— …

(o)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), it shall be unlawful for any person to transfer or possess a machinegun.

(2) This subsection does not apply with respect to—

(A) a transfer to or by, or possession by or under the authority of, the United States or any department or agency thereof or a State, or a department, agency, or political subdivision thereof; or

(B) any lawful transfer or lawful possession of a machinegun that was lawfully possessed before the date this subsection takes effect. …

Sec. 109. Amendment of National Firearms Act.

(a) Section 58450)) of the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. 5845(b)) is amended by striking out “any combination of parts designed and intended for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun,” and inserting in lieu thereof “any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun. …

Sec. 110. Effective Date

(c) Machinegun Prohibition.—Section 102(9) shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act.

[26]  U.S. Code Title 26, Subtitle E, Chapter 53, Section 5845: “Definitions.” Accessed June 6, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(b) Machinegun

The term “machinegun” means any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger. The term shall also include the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun, and any combination of parts from which a machinegun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person.

[27] Code of Federal Regulations Title 27, Chapter II, Subchapter B, Part 478, Subpart C, Section 478.36: “Transfer or Possession of Machine Guns.” Accessed June 14, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

No person shall transfer or possess a machine gun except:

(a) A transfer to or by, or possession by or under the authority of, the United States, or any department or agency thereof, or a State, or a department, agency, or political subdivision thereof. (See Part 479 of this chapter); or

(b) Any lawful transfer or lawful possession of a machine gun that was lawfully possessed before May 19, 1986 (See Part 479 of this chapter).

[28] Entry: “submachine gun.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

“A lightweight automatic gun that shoots pistol ammunition, is usually fired from the shoulder or hip, and often has the capacity for shooting single rounds.”

[29] Book: The Uzi Submachine Gun. By Chris McNab. Bloomsbury Publishing, 2011.

Page 28:

The orthodox firing position is with the Uzi shouldered, stock extended, as this position allows full use of the sights. With the iron sights, the front post is aligned with the target through the centre of the rear aperture. Such is the weapon’s balance, however, that it can be fired easily from the hip in trained hands, the user aiming by natural sense of direction plus adjustment of the observed impact of the bullets. In low-light or smoky conditions, modern fittings such as flashlights and laser pointers are further guides to aim. … One-handed firing, while perfectly possibly for someone who is extremely familiar with handling the gun, is typically not recommended….

[30] Guide: “Firearms Definitions.” Tennessee State Courts. Accessed February 18, 2020 at <www.tncourts.gov>

Page 8 (of PDF): “Submachine gun: A short barreled automatic firearm, most commonly firing pistol ammunition. It is intended for close-range combat.”

[31] Book: The Uzi Submachine Gun. By Chris McNab. Bloomsbury Publishing, 2011.

Page 28:

One-handed firing, while perfectly possibly for someone who is extremely familiar with handling the gun, is typically not recommended if only for reasons of accuracy—such fire would be largely a matter of “spray and pray.” A distinct advantage of the Uzi, however, is that it can be carried one-handed prior to firing (which is much more difficult to do with a full-length assault rifle or two-handed submachine gun). This facility is more important than it at first appears. Running, for example, is slowed by holding a weapon in both hands, as it keeps both arms to the front and prevents their swinging momentum that adds extra speed to the run.

[32] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Submachinegun … A simple fully automatic weapon that fires a pistol cartridge that is also referred to as a machine pistol.”

[33] Report: “An Analysis of the Infantry’s Need for an Assault Submachine Gun.” By Bruce F. Kay. U.S. Army, University of Nebraska, 1977. <apps.dtic.mil>

Page 1: “A submachine gun is usually chambered for a pistol sized cartridge. It is lighter, shorter and more compact than an assault rifle and may or may not have a selective rate of fire capability.”

[34] National Firearms Act Handbook. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Revised April 2009. <www.atf.gov>

Page 2: “The [Firearm Owner’s Protection] Act also amended the GCA [Gun Control Act of 1968] to prohibit the transfer or possession of machineguns.7 Exceptions were made for transfers of machineguns to, or possession of machineguns by, government agencies, and those lawfully possessed before the effective date of the prohibition, May 19, 1986.”

[35] Public Law 99-308: “Firearm Owners’ Protection Act.” 99th U.S. Congress (1985–1986). Signed into law by Ronald Reagan on May 19, 1986. <www.congress.gov>

Section 1. Short Title and Congressional Findings.

(a) Short Title.—This Act may be cited as the “Firearms Owners’ Protection Act”.

(b) Congressional Findings.—The Congress finds that—

(1) the rights of citizens—

(A) to keep and bear arms under the second amendment to the United States Constitution;

(B) to security against illegal and unreasonable searches and seizures under the fourth amendment;

(C) against uncompensated taking of property, double jeopardy, and assurance of due process of law under the fifth amendment; and

(D) against unconstitutional exercise of authority under the ninth and tenth amendments; require additional legislation to correct existing firearms statutes and enforcement policies; and

(2) additional legislation is required to reaffirm the intent of the Congress, as expressed in section 101 of the Gun Control Act of 1968, that “it is not the purpose of this title to place any undue or unnecessary Federal restrictions or burdens on law-abiding citizens with respect to the acquisition, possession, or use of firearms appropriate to the purpose of hunting, trapshooting, target shooting, personal protection, or any other lawful activity, and that this title is not intended to discourage or eliminate the private ownership or use of firearms by law-abiding citizens for lawful purposes.”

Sec. 101. Amendments to Section 921.

Section 921 of title 18, United States Code, is amended— …

(23) The term “machinegun” has the meaning given such term in section 58450)) of the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. 5845(b)). …

Sec. 102. Amendments to Section 922.

Section 922 of title 18, United States Code, is amended— …

(o)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), it shall be unlawful for any person to transfer or possess a machinegun.

(2) This subsection does not apply with respect to—

(A) a transfer to or by, or possession by or under the authority of, the United States or any department or agency thereof or a State, or a department, agency, or political subdivision thereof; or

(B) any lawful transfer or lawful possession of a machinegun that was lawfully possessed before the date this subsection takes effect. …

Sec. 109. Amendment of National Firearms Act.

(a) Section 58450)) of the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. 5845(b)) is amended by striking out “any combination of parts designed and intended for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun,” and inserting in lieu thereof “any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun. …

Sec. 110. Effective Date

(c) Machinegun Prohibition.—Section 102(9) shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act.

[36]  U.S. Code Title 26, Subtitle E, Chapter 53, Section 5845: “Definitions.” Accessed June 6, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(b) Machinegun

The term “machinegun” means any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger. The term shall also include the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun, and any combination of parts from which a machinegun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person.

[37] Code of Federal Regulations Title 27, Chapter II, Subchapter B, Part 478, Subpart C, Section 478.36: “Transfer or Possession of Machine Guns.” Accessed June 14, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

No person shall transfer or possess a machine gun except:

(a) A transfer to or by, or possession by or under the authority of, the United States, or any department or agency thereof, or a State, or a department, agency, or political subdivision thereof. (See Part 479 of this chapter); or

(b) Any lawful transfer or lawful possession of a machine gun that was lawfully possessed before May 19, 1986 (See Part 479 of this chapter).

[38] Entry: “action.” Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary, 2010. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 11: “the mechanism by which something is operated, as that of a gun or a piano.”

[39] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 13: “Firearms have loading and firing mechanisms called actions. Modern firearms may have differing actions depending on the design of the firearm.”

[40] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Fully automatic … Capability to fire a succession of cartridges so long as the trigger is depressed or until the ammunition supply is exhausted.”

[41] ATF Guidebook – Importation & Verification of Firearms, Ammunition, and Implements of War. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, December 2019. <www.atf.gov>

Page 24:

For the purposes of the National Firearms Act the term Machinegun means:

• Any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger

• The frame or receiver of any such weapon

• Any part designed and intended solely and exclusively or combination of parts designed and intended for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun, or

• Any combination of parts from which a machinegun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person.

[42] National Firearms Act Handbook. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Revised April 2009. <www.atf.gov>

Page 2: “The [Firearm Owner’s Protection] Act also amended the GCA [Gun Control Act of 1968] to prohibit the transfer or possession of machineguns.7 Exceptions were made for transfers of machineguns to, or possession of machineguns by, government agencies, and those lawfully possessed before the effective date of the prohibition, May 19, 1986.”

[43] Public Law 99-308: “Firearm Owners’ Protection Act.” 99th U.S. Congress (1985–1986). Signed into law by Ronald Reagan on May 19, 1986. <www.congress.gov>

Section 1. Short Title and Congressional Findings.

(a) Short Title.—This Act may be cited as the “Firearms Owners’ Protection Act”.

(b) Congressional Findings.—The Congress finds that—

(1) the rights of citizens—

(A) to keep and bear arms under the second amendment to the United States Constitution;

(B) to security against illegal and unreasonable searches and seizures under the fourth amendment;

(C) against uncompensated taking of property, double jeopardy, and assurance of due process of law under the fifth amendment; and

(D) against unconstitutional exercise of authority under the ninth and tenth amendments; require additional legislation to correct existing firearms statutes and enforcement policies; and

(2) additional legislation is required to reaffirm the intent of the Congress, as expressed in section 101 of the Gun Control Act of 1968, that “it is not the purpose of this title to place any undue or unnecessary Federal restrictions or burdens on law-abiding citizens with respect to the acquisition, possession, or use of firearms appropriate to the purpose of hunting, trapshooting, target shooting, personal protection, or any other lawful activity, and that this title is not intended to discourage or eliminate the private ownership or use of firearms by law-abiding citizens for lawful purposes.”

Sec. 101. Amendments to Section 921.

Section 921 of title 18, United States Code, is amended— …

(23) The term “machinegun” has the meaning given such term in section 58450)) of the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. 5845(b)). …

Sec. 102. Amendments to Section 922.

Section 922 of title 18, United States Code, is amended— …

(o)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), it shall be unlawful for any person to transfer or possess a machinegun.

(2) This subsection does not apply with respect to—

(A) a transfer to or by, or possession by or under the authority of, the United States or any department or agency thereof or a State, or a department, agency, or political subdivision thereof; or

(B) any lawful transfer or lawful possession of a machinegun that was lawfully possessed before the date this subsection takes effect. …

Sec. 109. Amendment of National Firearms Act.

(a) Section 58450)) of the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. 5845(b)) is amended by striking out “any combination of parts designed and intended for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun,” and inserting in lieu thereof “any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun. …

Sec. 110. Effective Date

(c) Machinegun Prohibition.—Section 102(9) shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act.

[44]  U.S. Code Title 26, Subtitle E, Chapter 53, Section 5845: “Definitions.” Accessed June 6, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(b) Machinegun

The term “machinegun” means any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger. The term shall also include the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun, and any combination of parts from which a machinegun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person.

[45] Report: “Firearm Use by Offenders.” By Caroline Wolf Harlow. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, November 2001. Revised 2/4/2002. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 15: “A semiautomatic gun is a firearm in which a shell is ejected and the next round of ammunition is loaded automatically from a magazine or clip. The trigger must be pulled for each shot. Semiautomatic guns may be classified as handguns, rifles, or shotguns.”

[46] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 13:

Modern firearms may have differing actions depending on the design of the firearm. The most common forms are semiautomatic, automatic (also known as full auto or machine gun), revolver, lever, slide (or pump), and bolt actions. … The most commonly encountered firearm actions are:

  • Semiautomatic …
  • Automatic …
  • Revolver—A firearm that has a number of chambers in a cylinder that rotates on an axis; during successive firing, a chamber rotates and aligns with the barrel.
  • Lever—A firearm wherein the breech mechanism is cycled by an external lever generally below the receiver.
  • Slide (pump)—A firearm with a movable forearm that is moved in line with the barrel by the shooter. This motion is connected to the breech bolt assembly, which performs the functions of the firing cycle that is assigned to it.
  • Bolt—A firearm where the breech closure is in line with the barrel; the closure manually reciprocates to load, unload, and cock; and locks in place by breech bolt lugs on the bolt engaging the receiver.

[47] Guide: “Firearms Definitions.” Tennessee State Courts. Accessed February 18, 2020 at <www.tncourts.gov>

Page 7 (of PDF): “Revolver: Handgun that has a cylinder with holes to contain the cartridges. The cylinder revolves to bring the cartridge into position to be fired. This is ‘single-action’ when the hammer must be cocked before the trigger can fire the weapon. It is ‘double-action’ when pulling the trigger both cocks and fires the gun.”

[48] Entry: “ammunition.” Collins English Dictionary (12th edition). HarperCollins Publishers, 2014. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1: “(Firearms, Gunnery, Ordnance & Artillery) any projectiles, such as bullets, rockets, etc, that can be discharged from a weapon.”

[49] Entry: “ammunition.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1: “Projectiles, such as bullets and shot, together with their fuses and primers, that can be fired from guns or otherwise propelled.”

[50] ATF Guidebook – Importation & Verification of Firearms, Ammunition, and Implements of War. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, December 2019. <www.atf.gov>

Page 15: “Ammunition … 18 U.S.C. § 921(a)(17)(A) … The term ‘AMMUNITION’ means ammunition or cartridge cases, primers, bullets, or propellant powder designed for use in any firearm.”

[51] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page 4-51:

4.3.1 Gun Ammunition

In a general sense, ammunition includes anything that is intended to be thrown at or put in the path of the enemy to deter, injure, or kill personnel or to destroy or damage materials. This chapter is devoted chiefly to gun ammunition. In this section, we describe how ammunition is classified, the common components of gun ammunition, and some of the actual types of gun ammunition in use today.

Gun ammunition consists of a projectile and a propelling charge.

[52] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 32: “Cartridge … [a] single unit of ammunition consisting of the case, primer, and propellant with one or more projectiles. Also applies to a shotshell.”

[53] Guide: “Firearms Definitions.” Tennessee State Courts. Accessed February 18, 2020 at <www.tncourts.gov>

Page 3 (of PDF): “Cartridge: A unit of ammunition, made up of a cartridge case, primer, powder, and bullet. Also called a ‘round’, or ‘load.’ Sometimes incorrectly called a ‘bullet.’

Page 7 (of PDF): “Round: A military term for a cartridge.”

[54] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 33: “Projectile … [a]n object propelled by the force of rapidly burning gases or other means.”

[55] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page 4-51: “The projectile is the component of ammunition that, when fired from a gun, carries out the tactical purpose of the weapon.”

[56] Entry: “bullet.” Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary, 2010. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1: “a small metal projectile, part of a cartridge, for firing from small arms.”

Definition 2: “a cartridge.”

[57] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 32: “Bullet…[a] non-spherical projectile for use in a rifled barrel.”

[58] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 33: “Propellant … [i]n a firearm, the chemical composition, which when ignited by a primer, generates gas. The gas propels the projectile. Also called ‘powder’; ‘gunpowder’; ‘smokeless powder.’

[59] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page A-6: “Propellants – A device used to provide a pressure that, acting against an object to be propelled, will accelerate the object to the required velocity.”

Page 1-8:

Propellants … The primary function of a propellant is to provide a pressure that, acting against an object to be propelled, will accelerate the object to the required velocity. This pressure must be controlled so that it will never exceed the strength of the container in which it is produced, such as guns, rocket motor housing, or pyrotechnic pistols. In addition, propellants must be comparatively insensitive to shock. Propellants may be either liquid or solid. (Liquid propellants will not be discussed here, since only solid propellants are used in Navy gun ammunition.)

[60] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 33: “Propellant … [a]lso called ‘powder’; ‘gunpowder’; ‘smokeless powder.’

[61] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page 1-8:

Primers … A primer is a device used to initiate the burning of a propellant charge by means of a flame. Its explosive train normally consists of a small quantity of extremely sensitive primary high explosive which, when detonated, ignites a small black powder booster which, in turn, ignites the black powder igniter. Primers are classified according to the method of initiation (normally percussion or electric). All primers function in a similar manner when initiated.

[62] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 32: “Primer … [t]he ignition component of a cartridge.”

[63] Entry: “cartridge case.” McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms (6th edition) 2003. <encyclopedia2.thefreedictionary.com>

“An item which is designed to hold an ammunition primer and propellant and to which a projectile may be affixed; its profile and size conform to the chamber of the weapon in which the round is fired.”

[64] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Caliber … The size of the ammunition that a weapon is designed to shoot, as measured by the bullet’s approximate diameter in inches in the United States and in millimeters in other countries.”

[65] Report: “The Association of Firearm Caliber With Likelihood of Death From Gunshot Injury in Criminal Assaults.” By Anthony A. Braga and Philip J. Cook. American Medical Association, July 27, 2018. <jamanetwork.com>

Page 1: “Firearms caliber was associated with the likelihood of death from gunshot wounds in criminal assault. Shootings with larger-caliber handguns were more deadly but no more sustained or accurate than shootings with smaller-caliber handguns.”

[66] Entry: “gauge.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1c: “The interior diameter of a shotgun barrel as determined by the number of lead balls of a size exactly fitting the barrel that are required to make one pound. Often used in combination: a 12-gauge shotgun.

[67] Book: Armed Conflict Injuries to the Extremities: A Treatment Manual. By Alexander Lerner and Michael Soudry. Springer Science & Business Media, April 28, 2011.

Chapter 2: “Wound Ballistics and Tissue Damage.” By Nimrod Rozen and Israel Dudkiewicz. Pages 21–34.

Pages 21: “The amount of tissue damage and the injury severity of gunshot injuries are due to the energy transmitted by the bullets or projectiles, depending mainly on their velocity.”

Page 22: “The velocity of the M-16 bullet is thrice that of the 0.22 bullet. This explains, why although M-16 has almost the same caliber and mass as the 0.22 its kinetic energy is almost 10 times than the 0.22. The longer the barrel, the more time available for bullet acceleration by the expanding gases (therefore, for identical rounds, the gun with a shorter barrel produces a lower-velocity bullet).”

[68] Webpage: “Ballistics.” University of Utah. Accessed June 23, 2020 at <webpath.med.utah.edu>

“Bullets fired from a rifle will have more energy than similar bullets fired from a handgun. More powder can also be used in rifle cartridges because the bullet chambers can be designed to withstand greater pressures (50,000 to 70,000 for rifles psi vs. 30,000 to 40,000 psi for handgun chamber). Higher pressures require a bigger gun with more recoil that is slower to load and generates more heat that produces more wear on the metal.”

[69] Book: Trauma: Contemporary Principles and Therapy. Edited by Lewis M. Flint. Wolters Kluwer Health/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2008.

Page 112: “Because the muzzle velocity of a projectile is ultimately determined by the amount of gunpowder propelling it, the weight of the projectile, and the length of the barrel through which it accelerates, velocity is an important characteristic used to classify firearm groups.”

[70] Entry: “magazine.” Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary, 2010. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 3: “a room for keeping gunpowder and other explosives.

Definition 4: “a military depot for arms or provisions.”

Definition 6: “a receptacle on a gun for holding cartridges.”

[71] Book: Shooter’s Bible Guide to Tactical Firearms: A Comprehensive Guide to Precision Rifles and Long-Range Shooting Gear. By Robert A. Sadowski. Skyhorse Publishing, 2015.

“Modern bolt-action rifles have two types of magazines, a detachable box magazine that can be removed from the rifle and a fixed or internal box magazine that is fixed to the rifle.”

[72] Webpage: “Bill Analysis: SB 880.” Loni Hancock, Senate Committee on Public Safety, March 2016. <www.leginfo.ca.gov>

Page 4: “Current law defines a ‘detachable magazine’ as any ammunition feeding device that can be removed readily from the firearm with neither disassembly of the firearm action nor use of a tool being required.”

[73] Guide: “Rifle Marksmanship.” U.S. Marine Corps, October 11, 2012. <www.trngcmd.marines.mil>

Page 3-3: “Magazine. The magazine holds cartridges ready for feeding, provides a guide for positioning cartridges for stripping, and provides quick reload capabilities for sustained firing.”

[74] Book: Shooter’s Bible Guide to Tactical Firearms: A Comprehensive Guide to Precision Rifles and Long-Range Shooting Gear. By Robert A. Sadowski. Skyhorse Publishing, 2015.

“Modern bolt-action rifles have two types of magazines, a detachable box magazine that can be removed from the rifle and a fixed or internal box magazine that is fixed to the rifle.”

[75] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page A-4:

Magazine – [a]ny compartment, space, or locker that is used, or intended to be used, for the stowage of explosives or ammunition of any kind.

[76] Entry: “magazine.” Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary, 2010. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 3: “a room for keeping gunpowder and other explosives.”

[77] Entry: “clip.” Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary, 2010. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 3: “a frame holding cartridges for insertion into the magazine of a firearm.”

[78] Book: 50 Guns That Changed the World: Iconic Firearms That Altered the Course of History. By Robert A. Sadowski. Skyhorse Publishing, 2015.

The Springfield 1903A3, SKS rifles, and Mauser 1896 pistol use a stripper clip that keeps cartridges in a single column. The stripper is inserted into the magazine and the operator presses down on the cartridges stripping them from the clip and into the weapon’s magazine. The stripper clip is then tossed. The M1917 and S&W M625 are two examples of revolvers that use half-moon and moon-clips. Half-moon clips hold three rounds; moon clips hold six rounds. The clips allow the revolver’s chambers to be loaded more quickly than if each round were loading separately. The M1 Garand uses an en-bloc clip that holds a double stack column of eight cartridges. Both the en-bloc clip and cartridges are loaded into the M1’s magazine. After the last round is fired the en-bloc clip is ejected from the magazine.

[79] Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law 2011. Edited by David Minthorn and others. Basic Books, 2011.

Page 295: “Clip is not the correct term for detachable magazines commonly used in modern military rifles, submachine guns and semiautomatic pistols.”

[80] Photo: “Loading Gun.” By milanmarkovic78. Adobe Stock. Purchased May 14, 2020 at <stock.adobe.com>

[81] Manual: “19th Century Percussion Revolver.” United States National Park Service, January 2018. <www.nps.gov>

[82] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Handgun … A weapon designed to fire a small projectile from one or more barrels when held in one hand with a short stock designed to be gripped by one hand.”

[83] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Revolver … A handgun that contains its ammunition in a revolving cylinder that typically holds five to nine cartridges, each within a separate chamber. Before a revolver fires, the cylinder rotates, and the next chamber is aligned with the barrel.”

[84] Photo: “Pistol Stock Photo.” By Dimdimich. iStock. Purchased February 24, 2020 at <www.istockphoto.com>

[85] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Pistol … Any handgun that does not contain its ammunition in a revolving cylinder. Pistols can be manually operated or semiautomatic. A semiautomatic pistol generally contains cartridges in a magazine located in the grip of the gun.”

[86] Photo: “A Silver Semi Auto Handgun on White Background Stock Photo.” By thepropshoppe. iStock. <www.istockphoto.com>

[87] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Derringer … A small single- or multiple-shot handgun other than a revolver or semiautomatic pistol.”

[88] Entry: “derringer.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

“A short-barreled pistol that has a large bore and is small enough to be carried in a pocket.”

[89] Photo: “Derringer.” By titelio. iStock. <www.istockphoto.com>

[90] Entry: “rifle.” Collins English Dictionary (12th edition). HarperCollins Publishers, 2014. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1a: “a firearm having a long barrel with a spirally grooved interior, which imparts to the bullet spinning motion and thus greater accuracy over a longer range”

[91] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 13: “Rifle—A firearm that has a rifled barrel and is designed to be fired from the shoulder”

[92] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page 3-15: “Shoulder weapons are designed to be held with both hands; they are braced against the shoulder to absorb the force of recoil and to improve accuracy.”

[93] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 12:

Firearm Types

The basic types of firearms are handguns and shoulder arms. … A shoulder arm is designed with a stock to be fired while being supported by the shoulder.

Page 13:

Shoulder Arms

Rifle—A firearm that has a rifled barrel and is designed to be fired from the shoulder

Shotgun—A smooth bore barreled shoulder firearm designed to fire shotshells that contain numerous pellets, or a single projectile.

[94] Entry: “carbine.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

“A lightweight rifle with a short barrel.”

[95] Entry: “carbine.” Merriam-Webster. Accessed April 23, 2020 at <www.merriam-webster.com>

Definition 1: “a short-barreled lightweight firearm originally used by cavalry.”

Definition 2: “a light short-barreled repeating rifle that is used as a supplementary military arm or for hunting in dense brush.”

[96] Entry: “carbine.” Collins English Dictionary (12th edition). HarperCollins Publishers, 2014. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1: “a light automatic or semiautomatic rifle of limited range.”

Definition 2: “a light short-barrelled shoulder rifle formerly used by cavalry.”

[97] Photo: “Gun Rifle Isolated on White.” By Solidmaks. Adobe Stock. Purchased May 30, 2020 at <stock.adobe.com>

NOTE: This traditional rifle does not have semi-automatic action, but manual action.

[98] Photo: “Left Side AR-15.” By Luevanos. Adobe Stock. Purchased May 30, 2020 at <stock.adobe.com>

NOTE: The AR-15 is not an automatic or military weapon despite its military look-a-like features.

[99] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Shotgun … A weapon intended to be fired from the shoulder that uses the energy of the explosive in a fixed shotgun shell to fire through a smooth bore either a number of ball shot or a single projectile for each single pull of the trigger.”

[100] Guide: “Firearms Definitions.” Tennessee State Courts. Accessed February 18, 2020 at <www.tncourts.gov>

Page 7 (of PDF): “Shotgun: A shoulder fired (long gun) with a smoothbore designed to fire shotshells containing numerous pellets or sometimes a single projectile.”

Page 8 (of PDF): “Slug: A term applied to a single projectile loaded into a shotshell.”

[101] Entry: “shotgun.” Collins English Dictionary (12th edition). HarperCollins Publishers, 2014. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1a: “a shoulder firearm with unrifled bore designed for the discharge of small shot at short range and used mainly for hunting small game”

[102] Entry: “scattergun.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

“See shotgun.”

[103] Book: The Hunting Rifle on Game–at Rest, on the Move and Long Range Shooting. By Theodore S. Van Dyke. Read Books Limited, September 12, 2016.

The great difficulty in killing any sort of game with a single ball is that a miss is as good as a mile. To remedy this the scattering principle of the shot gun was introduced. And the success of this depends upon a principle directly opposite to the fundamental principle of the rifle; to wit, that a miss is as good as a hit. That is, the true center of the charge never need exactly cover the game. And as a matter of fact it probably does not once in a hundred times, even when the gun is the hands of the very best shots. The consequence of this is that the same aim that with a shot-gun would suffice to kill a thousand successive pigeons at twenty yards would not suffice to even touch one out of a thousand at twenty yards with a rifle-ball. …

Now an inch at the gun-muzzle may equal three or four feet where the game is. Consequently at the time the ball gets its final direction from the muzzle the line of the sights may he several feet ahead of the game without your suspecting it and white you firmly believe you held on the body. This is a very effective way of using the shot-gun, especially on birds curling backward on either side of you. This, with the fact that the scattering of shot often renders holding ahead unnecessary at short distances, accounts for the reasoning of many who insist that holding on moving game is sufficient “if the gun be kept moving.”

[104] Book: Guns in American Society: An Encyclopedia of History, Politics, Culture, and the Law. By Gregg Lee Carter. ABC–CLIO, May 4, 2012.

Page 731:

Sawed-off Shotguns

Under the U.S. National Firearms Act of 1934, a sawed-off shotgun is shotgun with a barrel length of less than 18 inches and an overall length of less than 26 inches. Other countries and individual stales employ slightly different length definitions. The guns can be altered weapons or ones manufactured with shorter barrels. A sawed-off produces less muzzle velocity, so it has a shorter range and wider spread of the shot. These weapons have been used in a variety of ways over the years—for example, by the Confederacy during the Civil War; police wanting a wide shot as they enter into a house; criminals; and citizens for self-protection (especially of the home).

[105] U.S. Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 921: “Firearms, Definitions.” Accessed March 30, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(6) The term “short-barreled shotgun” means a shotgun having one or more barrels less than eighteen inches in length and any weapon made from a shotgun (whether by alteration, modification or otherwise) if such a weapon as modified has an overall length of less than twenty-six inches.

[106] Guide: “Quick Reference to Federal Firearms Laws.” U.S. Department of Justice, 2013. <www.justice.gov>

Page 3 (of PDF):

VI. Knowingly Possess or Manufacture:

18 USC § 922(k), (o) & (v); 26 USC § 5861. Punishable by up to 5 or 10 years imprisonment, depending upon specific violation. …

C. Sawed-off shotgun with a barrel length of less than 18” or overall length less than 26”

[107] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page 3-15: “Shoulder weapons are designed to be held with both hands; they are braced against the shoulder to absorb the force of recoil and to improve accuracy.”

[108] Guide: “Firearm Identification in the Forensic Science Laboratory.” By Robert M. Thompson. National District Attorneys Association, June 2010. <www.nist.gov>

Page 12:

Firearm Types

The basic types of firearms are handguns and shoulder arms. … A shoulder arm is designed with a stock to be fired while being supported by the shoulder.

Page 13:

Shoulder Arms

Rifle—A firearm that has a rifled barrel and is designed to be fired from the shoulder.

Shotgun—A smooth bore barreled shoulder firearm designed to fire shotshells that contain numerous pellets, or a single projectile.

[109] Photo: “Shotgun.” By Guy Sagi. Adobe Stock. Purchased March 30, 2020 at <stock.adobe.com>

[110] Report: “Firearm Use by Offenders.” By Caroline Wolf Harlow. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, November 2001. Revised 2/4/2002. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 15:

A semiautomatic gun is a firearm in which a shell is ejected and the next round of ammunition is loaded automatically from a magazine or clip. The trigger must be pulled for each shot. Semiautomatic guns may be classified as handguns, rifles, or shotguns.

A machine gun is an automatic gun which, if the trigger is held down, will fire rapidly and continuously. It is not a semi-automatic gun for which the trigger must be pulled for each shot. (Classified as fully automatic for analysis.)

[111] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Fully automatic … Capability to fire a succession of cartridges so long as the trigger is depressed or until the ammunition supply is exhausted.”

[112] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Fully automatic … Capability to fire a succession of cartridges so long as the trigger is depressed or until the ammunition supply is exhausted.”

[113] Article: “New Light Machine Gun Aims to ‘SAW’ [Squad Automatic Weapon] Soldiers’ Load.” By Eric Kowal. U.S. Army, November 7, 2011. <www.army.mil>

“The suggested rate of fire for machine guns is three to five round bursts whenever possible, eight to ten round bursts at the most. This gives the gunner time to readjust his aim and helps keep the barrel from overheating as quickly.”

[114] Guide: “Rifle Marksmanship.” U.S. Marine Corps, October 11, 2012. <www.trngcmd.marines.mil>

Page 3-1: “The Service rifle fires in either semiautomatic (i.e., single-shot) mode or in a three-round burst using a selector lever.”

[115] Pamphlet: “MOSAIC Glossary of Terms, Definitions, and Abbreviations.” United Nations, April 2018. <front.un-arm.org>

Page 22:

selective-fire

capability of a small arm or light weapon that can be adjusted to fire in two or more of the following ways:

a) semi-automatic, (i.e. one shot per depression of the trigger);

b) multi-shot burst (i.e. a set number of shots per depression of the trigger); or

c) automatic (i.e. continuous fire while the trigger is depressed).

[116] Book: Military Technology. By Ron Fridell. Lerner Publications, 2017.

Page 9:

Automatic Weapons

The first muskets and rifles shot one bullet at a time. After each shot, the shooter had to stop to reload. Firing a single-shot weapon took time, skill, and patience. To hit his target, the shooter had to be well trained. Then came firearms that could be loaded with more than one bullet. But they still shot one at a time.

By the late 1800s, soldiers were using automatic rifles and machine guns. These guns could fire many bullets with a single pull of the trigger. A machine gunner’s weapon fired hundreds of bullets each minute. He could point the weapon in the general direction of his enemy and fire. Even poorly-trained shooters could hit their targets. Automatic weapons made war a far more deadly business.

For modern soldiers, the most common military weapon is the AK-47 assault rifle. The AK-47 is not a very accurate weapon. It shakes and rattles when fired. But it can unleash about 700 shots per minute. …

The AK-47 is very reliable and is easy to buy. For this reason, it is the weapon of choice for most terrorists. Osama bin Laden, head of the al-Qaeda terrorist group, has called the AK-47 the terrorist’s most important weapon.

[117] Book: Military Technology. By Ron Fridell. Lerner Publications, 2017.

Page 9:

Automatic Weapons

The first muskets and rifles shot one bullet at a time. After each shot, the shooter had to stop to reload. Firing a single-shot weapon took time, skill, and patience. To hit his target, the shooter had to be well trained. Then came firearms that could be loaded with more than one bullet. But they still shot one at a time.

By the late 1800s, soldiers were using automatic rifles and machine guns. These guns could fire many bullets with a single pull of the trigger. A machine gunner’s weapon fired hundreds of bullets each minute. He could point the weapon in the general direction of his enemy and fire. Even poorly-trained shooters could hit their targets. Automatic weapons made war a far more deadly business.

For modern soldiers, the most common military weapon is the AK-47 assault rifle. The AK-47 is not a very accurate weapon. It shakes and rattles when fired. But it can unleash about 700 shots per minute. …

The AK-47 is very reliable and is easy to buy. For this reason, it is the weapon of choice for most terrorists. Osama bin Laden, head of the al-Qaeda terrorist group, has called the AK-47 the terrorist’s most important weapon.

[118] Webpage: “Colt M4 Select Fire Carbine.” Colt’s Manufacturing LLC. Accessed March 18, 2022 at <www.colt.com>

Colt M4 Select Fire Carbine … The Colt M4 Carbine serves as the United States Armed Forces’ weapon of choice and the weapon of the 21st century warfighter. … Models … US Military: R0920 Safe-Semi-Burst [or] R0921 Safe-Semi-Auto”

[119] Webpage: “Weapons.” U.S. Army. Accessed March 18, 2022 at <www.goarmy.com>

The M4 carbine is the standard weapon for brigade combat teams. It is lightweight, mobile and adaptable and can be mounted with a M203A2 grenade launcher, M320A1 grenade launcher or an M26 modular accessory shotgun system. The M4A1 is the fully automatic variant of the M4. It also comes equipped with an ambidextrous fire control and a heavier barrel that provides a sustained rate of fire.

[120] Report: “Summary of State and Federal Machine Gun Laws.” By Veronica Rose and Meghan Reilly. Connecticut General Assembly, Office of Legislative Research, January 12, 2009. <www.cga.ct.gov>

Summary

Federal law strictly regulates machine guns (firearms that fire many rounds of ammunition, without manual reloading, with a single pull of the trigger).

Among other things, federal law:

1. requires all machine guns, except antique firearms, not in the U.S. government's possession to be registered with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF);

2. bars private individuals from transferring or acquiring machine guns except those lawfully possessed and registered before May 19, 1986;

3. requires anyone transferring or manufacturing machine guns to get prior ATF approval and register the firearms;

4. with very limited exceptions, imposes a $200 excise tax whenever a machine gun is transferred;

5. bars interstate transport of machine guns without ATF approval; and

6. imposes harsh penalties for machine gun violations, including imprisonment of up to 10 years, a fine of up to $250,000, or both for possessing an unregistered machine gun. …

Federal Law and Machine Guns

Federal law defines a machine gun as “any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger.” This definition includes the frame or receiver, any part or combination of parts designed and intended, solely and exclusively, for use in converting a weapon into a machine gun, and any combination of parts from which a machine gun can be assembled (26 USC § 5845(b), 27 CFR §§ 478.11 & 479.11). It does not include “antique firearms” (26 USC § 5845(a) & (g)).

Since 1934, Congress has strictly regulated the manufacture, transfer, and possession of machine guns. The firearms are regulated by the 1934 National Firearms Act (NFA) (26 USC § 5801 et seq.) and the 1968 Gun Control Act as amended by the 1986 Firearms Owners’ Protection Act (18 USC § 921 et seq.).

[121] National Firearms Act Handbook. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Revised April 2009. <www.atf.gov>

Page 1:

History of the National Firearms Act (NFA)

1.1.1 The NFA of 1934. The NFA was originally enacted in 1934.1 Similar to the current NFA, the original Act imposed a tax on the making and transfer of firearms defined by the Act, as well as a special (occupational) tax on persons and entities engaged in the business of importing, manufacturing, and dealing in NFA firearms. The law also required the registration of all NFA firearms with the Secretary of the Treasury. Firearms subject to the 1934 Act included shotguns and rifles having barrels less than 18 inches in length, certain firearms described as “any other weapons,” machineguns, and firearm mufflers and silencers.

Page 2: “The [Firearm Owner’s Protection] Act also amended the [Gun Control Act] to prohibit the transfer or possession of machineguns.7 Exceptions were made for transfers of machineguns to, or possession of machineguns by, government agencies, and those lawfully possessed before the effective date of the prohibition, May 19, 1986.”

[122] Public Law 99-308: “Firearm Owners’ Protection Act.” 99th U.S. Congress (1985–1986). Signed into law by Ronald Reagan on May 19, 1986. <www.congress.gov>

Section 1. Short Title and Congressional Findings.

(a) Short Title.—This Act may be cited as the “Firearms Owners’ Protection Act”.

(b) Congressional Findings.—The Congress finds that—

(1) the rights of citizens—

(A) to keep and bear arms under the second amendment to the United States Constitution;

(B) to security against illegal and unreasonable searches and seizures under the fourth amendment;

(C) against uncompensated taking of property, double jeopardy, and assurance of due process of law under the fifth amendment; and

(D) against unconstitutional exercise of authority under the ninth and tenth amendments; require additional legislation to correct existing firearms statutes and enforcement policies; and

(2) additional legislation is required to reaffirm the intent of the Congress, as expressed in section 101 of the Gun Control Act of 1968, that “it is not the purpose of this title to place any undue or unnecessary Federal restrictions or burdens on law-abiding citizens with respect to the acquisition, possession, or use of firearms appropriate to the purpose of hunting, trapshooting, target shooting, personal protection, or any other lawful activity, and that this title is not intended to discourage or eliminate the private ownership or use of firearms by law-abiding citizens for lawful purposes.”

Sec. 101. Amendments to Section 921.

Section 921 of title 18, United States Code, is amended— …

(23) The term “machinegun” has the meaning given such term in section 58450)) of the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. 5845(b)). …

Sec. 102. Amendments to Section 922.

Section 922 of title 18, United States Code, is amended— …

(o)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), it shall be unlawful for any person to transfer or possess a machinegun.

(2) This subsection does not apply with respect to—

(A) a transfer to or by, or possession by or under the authority of, the United States or any department or agency thereof or a State, or a department, agency, or political subdivision thereof; or

(B) any lawful transfer or lawful possession of a machinegun that was lawfully possessed before the date this subsection takes effect. …

Sec. 109. Amendment of National Firearms Act.

(a) Section 58450)) of the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. 5845(b)) is amended by striking out “any combination of parts designed and intended for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun,” and inserting in lieu thereof “any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun. …

Sec. 110. Effective Date

(c) Machinegun Prohibition.—Section 102(9) shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act.

[123]  U.S. Code Title 26, Subtitle E, Chapter 53, Section 5845: “Definitions.” Accessed June 6, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(b) Machinegun

The term “machinegun” means any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger. The term shall also include the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun, and any combination of parts from which a machinegun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person.

[124] Final rule: “Machineguns, Destructive Devices and Certain Other Firearms; Background Checks for Responsible Persons of a Trust or Legal Entity With Respect to Making or Transferring a Firearm.” U.S. Department of Justice, January 4, 2016. <www.atf.gov>

Page: 42:

A review of trace data and criminal records from 2006 to 2014 disclosed twelve incidents in which owners of NFA [National Firearms Act] firearms were convicted of crimes; however, there is no evidence that these crimes were committed with NFA firearms. Convictions include attempted homicide, conspiracy to commit felony offenses of firearms laws, operating a drug involved premises, possession of unlawful firearms, possession of marijuana, intent to distribute methamphetamine, possession of a firearm during commission of drug trafficking, domestic violence, theft, dealing firearms without a license, and possession of an unregistered NFA firearm.

[125] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page 3-51: “The machine gun is designed to function automatically as long as ammunition is fed into the gun and the trigger is held to the rear.”

Page 3-4: “Most often feeding is done by a spring-loaded follower in a magazine. However, magazines have a limited capacity that cannot sustain the continuous rate of fire required by machine guns. Therefore, machine gun ammunition is belted, and the rounds are fed to the rear of the chamber by cam and lever action.”

NOTE: Despite the military’s distinction between machine guns and other automatic weapons like assault rifles, the U.S. Department of Justice considers any automatic firearm to be a machine gun under the National Firearms Act. See the next three footnotes for documentation.

[126] National Firearms Act Handbook. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Revised April 2009. <www.atf.gov>

Page 2:

The [Firearm Owner’s Protection] Act also amended the GCA [Gun Control Act of 1968] to prohibit the transfer or possession of machineguns.7 Exceptions were made for transfers of machineguns to, or possession of machineguns by, government agencies, and those lawfully possessed before the effective date of the prohibition, May 19, 1986.

Pages 94–95:

The term “machinegun” means any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger. The term shall also include the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun, and any combination of parts from which a machinegun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person.

[127] ATF Guidebook – Importation & Verification of Firearms, Ammunition, and Implements of War. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, December 2019. <www.atf.gov>

Page 24: “For the purposes of the National Firearms Act the term Machinegun means … [a]ny weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger.”

[128] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Automatic weapons are considered machineguns subject to the provisions of the National Firearms Act.”

[129] Entry: “machine gun.” Collins English Dictionary (12th edition). HarperCollins Publishers, 2014. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1a: “a rapid-firing automatic gun, usually mounted, from which small-arms ammunition is discharged.”

[130] Article: “M2A1 Machine Gun Features Greater Safety, Heightened Lethality.” By Kevin Doell. U.S. Army, December 3, 2012. <www.army.mil>

“The original M2 ‘Ma Deuce’ .50 Caliber Machine Gun is a belt-fed, heavy machine gun that mounts on most aircraft and vehicles and can be fired from a tripod. The system is highly effective against light armored vehicles, low- and slow-flying aircraft, boats and enemy personnel.”

[131] Article: “New Light Machine Gun Aims to ‘SAW’ Soldiers’ Load.” By Eric Kowal. U.S. Army, November 7, 2011. <www.army.mil>

The [Joint Service Small Arms Program] team hopes that the [Light Machine Gun] will eventually replace the M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, knows as a SAW, as the standard issue machine gun used by Soldiers in combat zones. …

According to a study conducted in 2005, the average fighting load for the SAW gunner is 79 pounds. That is nearly twice the weight a Soldier should carry, according to Army doctrine.

[132] Book: Gunner’s Mate Nonresident Training Course (NAVEDTRA 14324A). U.S. Naval Education and Training Command, November 2010.

Page 3-51: “The machine gun is designed to function automatically as long as ammunition is fed into the gun and the trigger is held to the rear.”

Page 3-4: “Therefore, machine gun ammunition is belted, and the rounds are fed to the rear of the chamber by cam and lever action.”

[133] Book: The Uzi Submachine Gun. By Chris McNab. Bloomsbury Publishing, 2011.

Page 28: “A distinct advantage of the Uzi, however, is that it can be carried one-handed prior to firing (which is much more difficult to do with a full- length assault rifle or two-handed submachine gun). This facility is more important than it at first appears. Running, for example, is slowed by holding a weapon in both hands, as it keeps both arms to the front and prevents their swinging momentum that adds extra speed to the run.”

[134] Guide: “Firearms Definitions.” Tennessee State Courts. Accessed February 18, 2020 at <www.tncourts.gov>

Page 8 (of PDF): “Submachine gun: A short barreled automatic firearm, most commonly firing pistol ammunition. It is intended for close-range combat.”

[135] Book: The Uzi Submachine Gun. By Chris McNab. Bloomsbury Publishing, 2011.

Page 28:

Five or six controlled bursts will usually empty an Uzi 32-round magazine, the spent cartridges ejecting from the port on the right of the gun, and following an up-and-to-the-right trajectory. On open-bolt guns, when the magazine runs out and the trigger is pulled “dry” the bolt stops in the front position and the magazine needs changing. This is largely a repeat of the loading procedure, once the spent magazine has been ejected by pressing the release catch on the grip. On occasions the bolt will actually stop in the rear position, such as when release of the trigger in automatic fire coincides with firing the last round in the magazine. In such occasions, the gun does not need to be cocked again to fire, once a fresh magazine is inserted.

[136] Entry: “submachine gun.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

“A lightweight automatic gun that shoots pistol ammunition, is usually fired from the shoulder or hip, and often has the capacity for shooting single rounds.”

[137] Book: The Uzi Submachine Gun. By Chris McNab. Bloomsbury Publishing, 2011.

Page 28:

The orthodox firing position is with the Uzi shouldered, stock extended, as this position allows full use of the sights. With the iron sights, the front post is aligned with the target through the centre of the rear aperture. Such is the weapon’s balance, however, that it can be fired easily from the hip in trained hands, the user aiming by natural sense of direction plus adjustment of the observed impact of the bullets. In low-light or smoky conditions, modern fittings such as flashlights and laser pointers are further guides to aim. … One-handed firing, while perfectly possibly for someone who is extremely familiar with handling the gun, is typically not recommended….

[138] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Submachinegun … A simple fully automatic weapon that fires a pistol cartridge that is also referred to as a machine pistol.”

[139] Thesis: “An Analysis of the Infantry’s Need for an Assault Submachine Gun.” U.S. Army, University of Nebraska, 1977. <apps.dtic.mil>

Page 1: “A submachine gun is usually chambered for a pistol sized cartridge. It is lighter, shorter and more compact than an assault rifle and may or may not have a selective rate of fire capability.”

[140] Book: Military Technology. By Ron Fridell. Lerner Publications, 2017.

Page 9:

For modern soldiers, the most common military weapon is the AK-47 assault rifle. The AK-47 is not a very accurate weapon. It shakes and rattles when fired. But it can unleash about 700 shots per minute.

The AK-47 is very reliable and is easy to buy. For this reason, it is the weapon of choice for most terrorists. Osama bin Laden, head of the al-Qaeda terrorist group, has called the AK-47 the terrorist’s most important weapon.

[141] Webpage: “Colt M4 Select Fire Carbine.” Colt’s Manufacturing LLC. Accessed March 18, 2022 at <www.colt.com>

Colt M4 Select Fire Carbine … The Colt M4 Carbine serves as the United States Armed Forces’ weapon of choice and the weapon of the 21st century warfighter. … Models … US Military: R0920 Safe-Semi-Burst [or] R0921 Safe-Semi-Auto”

[142] Webpage: “Weapons.” U.S. Army. Accessed March 18, 2022 at <www.goarmy.com>

“The M4 carbine is the standard weapon for brigade combat teams. It is lightweight, mobile and adaptable and can be mounted with a M203A2 grenade launcher, M320A1 grenade launcher or an M26 modular accessory shotgun system. The M4A1 is the fully automatic variant of the M4. It also comes equipped with an ambidextrous fire control and a heavier barrel that provides a sustained rate of fire.”

[143] Guide: “Rifle Marksmanship.” U.S. Marine Corps, October 11, 2012. <www.trngcmd.marines.mil>

Page 10-1: “To maintain an advantage, the Marine carries his weapon in a position that permits the Service rifle to be both easily carried and presented as quickly as possible. A carry is established based on both the sling and the situation, such as moving in a close quarters environment or moving over or under objects.”

[144] Entry: “assault rifle.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1: “A rifle that has a detachable magazine and is capable of both automatic and semiautomatic fire, designed for individual use in combat.”

[145] Guide: “Rifle Marksmanship.” U.S. Marine Corps, October 11, 2012. <www.trngcmd.marines.mil>

Page 4-8: “The recommended number of rounds per magazine [of a service rifle] is no more than 29. Thirty rounds in the magazine can prohibit the magazine from seating properly on a closed bolt.”

[146] Entry: “assault rifle.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1: “A rifle that has a detachable magazine and is capable of both automatic and semiautomatic fire, designed for individual use in combat.”

[147] Entry: “assault rifle.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (5th edition). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2016. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

Definition 1: “A rifle that has a detachable magazine and is capable of both automatic and semiautomatic fire, designed for individual use in combat.”

[148] Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law 2011. Edited by David Minthorn and others. Basic Books, 2011.

Page 295: “assault rifle: A rifle that is capable of being fired in fully automatic and semi-automatic modes, at the user’s option. Designed for, and used by, military forces. Also used by some law enforcement agencies. The form: an M16 assault rifle, an AK-47 assault rifle.

[149] Guide: “Rifle Marksmanship.” U.S. Marine Corps, October 11, 2012. <www.trngcmd.marines.mil>

Page 3-1: “The Service rifle fires in either semiautomatic (i.e., single-shot) mode or in a three-round burst using a selector lever.”

[150] Pamphlet: “MOSAIC Glossary of Terms, Definitions, and Abbreviations.” United Nations, April 2018. <front.un-arm.org>

Page 22:

selective-fire

capability of a small arm or light weapon that can be adjusted to fire in two or more of the following ways:

a) semi-automatic, (i.e. one shot per depression of the trigger);

b) multi-shot burst (i.e. a set number of shots per depression of the trigger); or

c) automatic (i.e. continuous fire while the trigger is depressed).

[151] Webpage: “U.S. Marine Corps.” By Lance Cpl. Jose Gonzalez. Marines. Downloaded March 18, 2020 at <www.marines.mil>

Description: “Lance Cpl. Matthew M. DeForge, a motor vehicle operator with 7th Engineer Support Battalion, 1st Marine Logistics Group, engages a target with a M240-B machine gun during a machine gun range at Fort Greely, Alaska, Feb. 22.”

[152] Webpage: “National Archives Catalog.” National Archives and Records Administration. Downloaded June 17, 2022 at <catalog.archives.gov>

Description: “US Marine Corps (USMC) Sergeant (SGT) Eddie Hedgepeth, assigned to 2nd Division, Force Service Support Group (FSSG), PSD [Protective Security Detail] Platoon sites through the scope on his 5.56mm M4 Carbine, during a security patrol along Alternate Supply Route (ASR) Boston, located in Fallujah, Iraq, during Operation Iraqi Freedom.”

[153] Search: “Assault Weapon OR “Assault Weapons.” Google News, May 20, 2020. Date delimited from 1/1/20 to 5/20/20. <news.google.com>

NOTE: This search produced 17,600 results, 243 of which were unique results that used the term “assault weapon” to describe a semi-automatic weapon.

[154] Article: “Biden Says if Elected in 2020 He Will Push to Ban Assault Weapons.” By Kate Sullivan. CNN, August 12, 2019. <www.cnn.com>

“There is so much we can do—practical, sensible steps that draw broad support among the American people,” he said, also writing that there is “overwhelming data” that shootings committed with assault weapons result in more deaths than shootings committee with other kinds of guns. …

Asked in the interview about criticism that if elected president he would take away people’s guns, Biden responded, “Bingo! You’re right if you have an assault weapon.” He said the Second Amendment doesn’t say the government can’t restrict what kind of weapons people can own….

[155] Transcript: “Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest.” The White House, June 13, 2016. <obamawhitehouse.archives.gov>

[Mr. Earnest:] These assault weapons are weapons of war. …

[Question:] [W]hat’s the impact of the fact that we’ve seen this specific type of gun, the AR-15 assault rifle, used in a number of these mass shootings? Has that changed this White House’s strategy on what needs to be done?

Mr. Earnest: Toluse, I think the President—I feel strongly in telling you that the President believes that it should be illegal for an individual to walk into a gun store and purchase an assault rifle. It’s a weapon of war, and the President believes that it should be banned and that it should not be legal for you to walk into a gun store to buy that weapon of war.

[156] Report: “Firearm Use by Offenders.” By Caroline Wolf Harlow. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, November 2001. Revised 2/4/2002. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 15:

A semiautomatic gun is a firearm in which a shell is ejected and the next round of ammunition is loaded automatically from a magazine or clip. The trigger must be pulled for each shot. Semiautomatic guns may be classified as handguns, rifles, or shotguns.

A machine gun is an automatic gun which, if the trigger is held down, will fire rapidly and continuously. It is not a semi-automatic gun for which the trigger must be pulled for each shot. (Classified as fully automatic for analysis.)

[157] Book: Military Technology. By Ron Fridell. Lerner Publications, 2017.

Page 9:

Automatic Weapons

The first muskets and rifles shot one bullet at a time. After each shot, the shooter had to stop to reload. Firing a single-shot weapon took time, skill, and patience. To hit his target, the shooter had to be well trained. Then came firearms that could be loaded with more than one bullet. But they still shot one at a time.

By the late 1800s, soldiers were using automatic rifles and machine guns. These guns could fire many bullets with a single pull of the trigger. A machine gunner’s weapon fired hundreds of bullets each minute. He could point the weapon in the general direction of his enemy and fire. Even poorly-trained shooters could hit their targets. Automatic weapons made war a far more deadly business.

For modern soldiers, the most common military weapon is the AK-47 assault rifle. The AK-47 is not a very accurate weapon. It shakes and rattles when fired. But it can unleash about 700 shots per minute. …

The AK-47 is very reliable and is easy to buy. For this reason, it is the weapon of choice for most terrorists. Osama bin Laden, head of the al-Qaeda terrorist group, has called the AK-47 the terrorist’s most important weapon.

[158] Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law 2011. Edited by David Minthorn and others. Basic Books, 2011.

Page 295:

assault weapon: A semi-automatic firearm similar in appearance to a fully automatic firearm or military weapon. Not synonymous with assault rifle, which can be used in fully automatic mode. Wherever possible, be specific about the type of weapon: semi-automatic rifle, semi-automatic shotgun or semi-automatic pistol.

assault rifle: A rifle that is capable of being fired in fully automatic and semi-automatic modes, at the user’s option. Designed for, and used by, military forces. Also used by some law enforcement agencies. The form: an M16 assault rifle, an AK-47 assault rifle.

[159] Public Law 103–322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title XI, Subtitle A, Section 110102b:

(b) Definition of Semiautomatic Assault Weapon— …

(30) The term “semiautomatic assault weapon” means— …

(B) a semiautomatic rifle that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of—

(i) a folding or telescoping stock;

(ii) a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon;

(iii) a bayonet mount;

(iv) a flash suppressor or threaded barrel designed to accommodate a flash suppressor; and

(v) a grenade launcher;

(C) a semiautomatic pistol that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of—

(i) an ammunition magazine that attaches to the pistol outside of the pistol grip;

(ii) a threaded barrel capable of accepting a barrel extender, flash suppressor, forward handgrip, or silencer;

(iii) a shroud that is attached to, or partially or completely encircles, the barrel and that permits the shooter to hold the firearm with the nontrigger hand without being burned;

(iv) a manufactured weight of 50 ounces or more when the pistol is unloaded; and

(v) a semiautomatic version of an automatic firearm; and

(D) a semiautomatic shotgun that has at least 2 of—

(i) a folding or telescoping stock;

(ii) a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon;

(iii) a fixed magazine capacity in excess of 5 rounds; and

(iv) an ability to accept a detachable magazine.

[160] Webpage: “Colt M4 Select Fire Carbine.” Colt’s Manufacturing LLC. Accessed March 18, 2022 at <www.colt.com>

Colt M4 Select Fire Carbine … The Colt M4 Carbine serves as the United States Armed Forces’ weapon of choice and the weapon of the 21st century warfighter. … Models … US Military: R0920 Safe-Semi-Burst [or] R0921 Safe-Semi-Auto”

[161] Webpage: “Weapons.” U.S. Army. Accessed March 18, 2022 at <www.goarmy.com>

The M4 carbine is the standard weapon for brigade combat teams. It is lightweight, mobile and adaptable and can be mounted with a M203A2 grenade launcher, M320A1 grenade launcher or an M26 modular accessory shotgun system. The M4A1 is the fully automatic variant of the M4. It also comes equipped with an ambidextrous fire control and a heavier barrel that provides a sustained rate of fire.

[162] California Code, Part 6, Title 4, Division 10, Chapter 2, Article 1, Section 30510: “Assault Weapons and .50 BMG Rifles.” Accessed May 24, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

‘[A]ssault weapon’ means the following designated semiautomatic firearms: (a) All of the following specified rifles … (5) Colt AR-15 series.”

[163] Connecticut General Statutes, Title 53, Chapter 943: “Offenses Against Public Peace and Safety.” Accessed March 18, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

‘Assault weapon’ means … any of the following specified semiautomatic firearms … Colt AR-15 and Sporter….”

[164] Maryland Public Safety Code, Title 5, Subtitle 1: “Regulated Firearms.” Accessed March 18, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

Section 5-101. Definitions … the following specific assault weapons or their copies, regardless of which company produced and manufactured that assault weapon … Colt AR-15, CAR-15, and all imitations except Colt AR-15 Sporter H-BAR rifle….”

[165] Webpage: “Understanding America’s Rifle.” National Shooting Sports Foundation. Accessed April 7, 2022 at <www.nssf.org>

“Versions of modern sporting rifles are legal to own in most states, provided the purchaser passes the mandatory FBI background check required for all retail firearm purchasers.”

[166] Article: “Basic Firearm Safety Starts with Owner, Proper Training.” By Kyle Hodges. U.S. Army, March 11, 2016. <www.army.mil>

As an example of a myth, America’s most popular rifle—the AR-15—is often portrayed as being something it is not. Probably one of the more popular myths is that the “AR” stands for “assault rifle” or “automatic rifle.” It actually stands for “Armalite Rifle,” after the company that developed it in the 1950s.

While it’s true that a similar, burst-fire/fully-automatic version of this weapon is used by the military, the AR-15 purchased by civilians is only a semi-automatic firearm, just like many of the pistols on the market today.

[167] Webpage: “AR Stands for ArmaLite.” National Shooting Sports Foundation, May 23, 2011. <www.nssf.org>

Some people—even some within the firearms industry and hunting and target-shooting communities—remain misinformed about AR-style modern sporting rifles, thinking that the AR prefix stands for “assault rifle” or “automatic rifle.”

It means neither.

The AR stands for ArmaLite, the company that in the 1950s developed this style of rifle, which eventually became both the military’s M16 rifle and the civilian semi-automatic sporting rifle known as the AR-15, or modern sporting rifle.

[168] Article: “The Most Versatile Semi-Automatic Rifles.” By John Haughey and Tyler Freel. Outdoor Life, November 20, 2011 Last updated 4/10/2019. <www.outdoorlife.com>

“Regardless of what you think or how you feel about using semi-automatic guns for hunting, autoloaders and AR-style rifles are becoming more common in [hunting] camps and virtually every major manufacturer is producing these guns in calibers heavy enough to drop deer, hogs and bears.”

[169] Article: “8 Experts Pick Their Home Defense Weapon of Choice.” By Jake Christopher. Ballistic Magazine, August 28, 2015. <www.ballisticmag.com>

Paul Buffoni

Affiliation: Bravo Company USA, Inc. / Prior service USMC [U.S. Marine Corps]

Position: Founder and CEO

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Rifle – BCM RECCE KMR

Top Shot Chris Cheng

Affiliation: Pro Staff for Bass Pro Shops, Leupold and Salient Arms International

Position: The History Channel’s Top Shot Champion

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – Glock 34

Walt Hasser

Affiliation: Armalite

Position: Vice President of Product Management

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – Glock 23

Jordan Hunter

Affiliation: Retired USMC Infantry

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – 9mm Glock 19 with Unity Tactical ATOM Slide

Frank Proctor

Affiliation: Way of the Gun Performance Shooting

Position: Owner/Instructor

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Rifle – AR-15

Nate Stokes

Affiliation: US Army Veteran, Law Enforcement Officer

Position: Police Officer

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Rifle – Daniel Defense Mk18

Rachel VandeVoort

Affiliation: Kimber Manufacturing

Position: Trade Relations Manager

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – Currently the Stainless Ultra TLE II (LG) in .45 ACP, with two extra loaded mags.

Bill Wilson

Affiliation: Wilson Combat

Position: Founder/President

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: N/A- Varies.

[170] Book: Military Technology. By Ron Fridell. Lerner Publications, 2017.

Page 9:

For modern soldiers, the most common military weapon is the AK-47 assault rifle. The AK-47 is not a very accurate weapon. It shakes and rattles when fired. But it can unleash about 700 shots per minute.

The AK-47 is very reliable and is easy to buy. For this reason, it is the weapon of choice for most terrorists. Osama bin Laden, head of the al-Qaeda terrorist group, has called the AK-47 the terrorist’s most important weapon.

[171] Webpage: “Colt M4 Select Fire Carbine.” Colt’s Manufacturing LLC. Accessed March 18, 2022 at <www.colt.com>

Colt M4 Select Fire Carbine … The Colt M4 Carbine serves as the United States Armed Forces’ weapon of choice and the weapon of the 21st century warfighter. … Models … US Military: R0920 Safe-Semi-Burst [or] R0921 Safe-Semi-Auto”

[172] Webpage: “Understanding America’s Rifle.” National Shooting Sports Foundation. Accessed February 26, 2020 at <www.nssf.org>

The term “modern sporting rifle” was coined to describe today’s very popular semiautomatic rifle designs, including the AR-15 and its offspring. These rifles are used by hunters, competitors, a lot of Americans seeking home-defense guns and by many others who simply enjoy going to the range.

Though modern sporting rifles are increasingly popular, they are too often misunderstood. …

If someone calls an AR-15-style rifle an “assault weapon,” then they’ve been duped by an agenda. The only real way to define what is an “assault weapon” is politically, as in how any given law chooses to define the term—this is why the states that have banned this category of semiautomatic firearms have done so with very different definitions.

[173] Webpage: “NSSF Releases Most Recent Firearm Production Figures.” National Shooting Sports Foundation, November 16, 2020. <www.nssf.org>

NSSF®, the firearm industry’s trade association, released the 2020 edition of its Firearm Production Report to members. The report compiles the most up to date information based on data sourced from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ (ATF’s) Annual Firearms Manufacturing and Export Reports (AFMER) as well as the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC). Key findings for public release showed: …

• Since 1990, there are an estimated 19.8 million Modern Sporting Rifles (MSRs) in circulation today.

[174] Article: “The Most Versatile Semi-Automatic Rifles.” By John Haughey and Tyler Freel. Outdoor Life, November 20, 2011 Last updated 4/10/2019. <www.outdoorlife.com>

“Regardless of what you think or how you feel about using semi-automatic guns for hunting, autoloaders and AR-style rifles are becoming more common in [hunting] camps and virtually every major manufacturer is producing these guns in calibers heavy enough to drop deer, hogs and bears.”

[175] Webpage: “NSSF Releases Most Recent Firearm Production Figures.” National Shooting Sports Foundation, November 16, 2020. <www.nssf.org>

NSSF®, the firearm industry’s trade association, released the 2020 edition of its Firearm Production Report to members. The report compiles the most up to date information based on data sourced from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ (ATF’s) Annual Firearms Manufacturing and Export Reports (AFMER) as well as the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC). Key findings for public release showed: …

• Since 1990, there are an estimated 19.8 million Modern Sporting Rifles (MSRs) in circulation today.

[176] Public Law 103–322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title XI, Subtitle A, Section 110102b:

(b) Definition of Semiautomatic Assault Weapon— …

(30) The term “semiautomatic assault weapon” means— …

(B) a semiautomatic rifle that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of— …

(C) a semiautomatic pistol that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of— …

(D) a semiautomatic shotgun that has at least 2 of— …

(iv) an ability to accept a detachable magazine.

[177] Webpage: “Bill Analysis: SB 880.” Loni Hancock, Senate Committee on Public Safety, March 2016. <www.leginfo.ca.gov>

Page 4: “Current law defines a ‘detachable magazine’ as any ammunition feeding device that can be removed readily from the firearm with neither disassembly of the firearm action nor use of a tool being required.”

[178] Guide: “Rifle Marksmanship.” U.S. Marine Corps, October 11, 2012. <www.trngcmd.marines.mil>

Page 3-3: “Magazine. The magazine holds cartridges ready for feeding, provides a guide for positioning cartridges for stripping, and provides quick reload capabilities for sustained firing.”

[179] Article: “Tomorrow’s State-of-the-Art Sporting Rifle.” By Art Blatt. Guns & Ammo, July 1981.

Page 54: “Speaking of recoil, all of these guns generate less recoil than manually-operated rifles. Why? First, most of these autoloaders are gas-operated. … The boys from Bridgeport proved to the shooting world that gas-operated guns greatly reduced ‘kick’ by spreading recoil out over a longer period of time.”

[180] Webpage: “The Science of History Helps Uncover the Story of a World War II Rifle.” U.S. Navy, August 18, 2016. <www.history.navy.mil>

The M1 Garand is a .30 caliber semi-automatic rifle which lent a significant advantage to U.S. troops during World War II and marked the first time semi-automatic rifles were generally issued to the U.S. military for use in combat. The M1 Garand is equipped with a gas cylinder located beneath the barrel. Gas pressure produced when firing a round traveled back through the gas cylinder to drive the piston and operating rod back, eject the empty cartridge case and push the next round from the clip into the chamber. This auto-reload system allowed for reliable quick fire capability and reduced recoil which helped maintain accuracy.

[181] Article: “Tomorrow’s State-of-the-Art Sporting Rifle.” By Art Blatt. Guns & Ammo, July 1981.

Page 54: “All of these rifles possess elevated sights that demand that the shooter place his head in a more erect position. This different shooting and head placement position helps to reduce felt recoil and places less strain and stress on the shooter’s neck. The rifle is merely brought ‘to’ the shooter’s cheek instead of the shooter having to assume a cramped position to ‘get into the gun.’

[182] Public Law 103–322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title XI, Subtitle A, Section 110102b:

(b) Definition of Semiautomatic Assault Weapon— …

(30) The term “semiautomatic assault weapon” means— …

(B) a semiautomatic rifle that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of— …

(iv) a flash suppressor or threaded barrel designed to accommodate a flash suppressor….

[183] Entry: “flash suppressor.” Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms, U.S. Department of Defense, 2005. <www.thefreedictionary.com>

“Device attached to the muzzle of the weapon which reduces the amount of visible light or flash created by burning propellant gases.”

[184] Report: “Regulations for Assault Weapons and Large Capacity Magazines: Final Statement of Reasons.” Department of Justice, 2000. <oag.ca.gov>

Pages 2–3: “Accordingly, the original definition was changed to: ‘flash suppressor means any device that reduces or redirects muzzle flash from the shooter’s field of vision.’

[185] Article: “Flash Hiders & Compensators.” By Steve Felgenhauer. Military.com. Accessed April 28, 2020 at <www.military.com>

A flash hider for tactical shooters (law enforcement and military) is indispensable—it helps minimize the telltale muzzle flash that can give away their position. A well-designed flash hider can reduce the “bloom” caused by the muzzle blast while viewing through night vision goggles. The reduced flash also helps keep a shooter’s night vision, the ability to see in low-light conditions, from being disabled. Bear and hog hunters or those who call and hunt predators in low light or at night will find the benefits of a flash hider equally indispensable.

[186] Article: “M2A1 Machine Gun Features Greater Safety, Heightened Lethality.” By Kevin Doell. U.S. Army, December 3, 2012. <www.army.mil>

“The M2A1 includes new modern features and design improvements that make it easier and safer to use including a quick change barrel, fixed headspace and timing and a new flash hider that reduces the weapon’s signature by 95 percent at night.”

[187] Public Law 103–322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title XI, Subtitle A, Section 110102b:

(b) Definition of Semiautomatic Assault Weapon— …

(30) The term “semiautomatic assault weapon” means— …

(B) a semiautomatic rifle that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of— …

(ii) a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon…

(D) a semiautomatic shotgun that has at least 2 of— …

(ii) a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon….

[188] Article: “Tomorrow’s State-of-the-Art Sporting Rifle.” By Art Blatt. Guns & Ammo, July 1981.

Page 54: “Appearances aside, the pistol grip is comfortable and adaptable to a wider range of shooters’ hands. Everybody’s hands are a different size, yet pistol grips do seemingly ‘fit-all’! [sic.]”

[189] Guide: “Infantry.” U.S. Army, Spring 2002. <www.benning.army.mil>

Page 15: “The modified traversing unit has an elevation brake to reduce launch transients, and improved ‘pistol grip’ handgrips/controls that provide improved ergonomics.”

[190] Public Law 103–322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title XI, Subtitle A, Section 110102b:

(b) Definition of Semiautomatic Assault Weapon— …

(30) The term “semiautomatic assault weapon” means— …

(B) a semiautomatic rifle that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of—

(i) a folding or telescoping stock…

(D) a semiautomatic shotgun that has at least 2 of—

(i) a folding or telescoping stock….

[191] House Resolution 2959: “Freedom From Assault Weapons Act.” U.S. House of Representatives, 116th Congress (2019–2020). Accessed April 25, 2020 at <www.congress.gov>

“A folding, telescoping, or detachable stock, or is otherwise foldable or adjustable in a manner that operates to reduce the length, size, or any other dimension, or otherwise enhances the concealability, of the weapon.”

[192] Article: “Remington, Mossberg Unveil Standout Shotguns at SHOT 2019.” By Matthew Cox. Military.com, January 24, 2019. <www.military.com>

“The folding stock features a secure locking mechanism when extended and stays folded with tension only, so it can be quickly extended. “We are trying to combine ergonomics in use with ergonomics with folding—get it folded up, get it more compact, make it more transportable,” Cox said.”

[193] UTG AK47 Side Folding Stock Adaptor

[194] Calculated with data from:

a) Book: Firearms and Violence: A Critical Review. By the Committee to Improve Research and Data on Firearms and the Committee on Law and Justice, National Research Council of the National Academies. Edited by Charles F. Wellford, John V. Pepper, and Carol V. Petrie. National Academies Press, 2005.

Page 57: “Table 3-2”

b) Report: “Firearms Commerce in the United States Annual Statistical Update 2021.” U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, September 10, 2021. <www.atf.gov>

Pages 1–2: “Exhibit 1. Firearms Manufactured (1986–2019)”

Pages 3–4: “Exhibit 2. Firearms Manufacturers’ Exports (1986–2019) … The AFMER [U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Annual Firearms Manufacturing and Exportation Report] report excludes production for the U.S. military but includes firearms purchased by domestic law enforcement agencies.”

Pages 5–6: “Exhibit 3. Firearms Imports (1986–2020)”

c) Report: “Gun Control Legislation.” By William J. Krouse. Congressional Research Service, November 14, 2012. <fas.org>

d) Dataset: “Table 7.1. Selected Per Capita Product and Income Series in Current and Chained Dollars.” U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis. Last revised February 25, 2021. <www.bea.gov>

Line 18: “Population (Midperiod, Thousands)”

NOTES:

  • These estimates do not account for the fact that some guns are eliminated through loss, confiscation, damage, or destruction.
  • An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[195] Calculated with data from:

a) Book: Firearms and Violence: A Critical Review. By the Committee to Improve Research and Data on Firearms and the Committee on Law and Justice, National Research Council of the National Academies. Edited by Charles F. Wellford, John V. Pepper, and Carol V. Petrie. National Academies Press, 2005.

Page 57: “Table 3-2”

b) Report: “Firearms Commerce in the United States Annual Statistical Update 2021.” U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, September 10, 2021. <www.atf.gov>

Pages 1–2: “Exhibit 1. Firearms Manufactured (1986–2019)”

Pages 3–4: “Exhibit 2. Firearms Manufacturers’ Exports (1986–2019) … The AFMER [U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Annual Firearms Manufacturing and Exportation Report] report excludes production for the U.S. military but includes firearms purchased by domestic law enforcement agencies.”

Pages 5–6: “Exhibit 3. Firearms Imports (1986–2020)”

c) Report: “Gun Control Legislation.” By William J. Krouse. Congressional Research Service, November 14, 2012. <fas.org>

d) Dataset: “Table 7.1. Selected Per Capita Product and Income Series in Current and Chained Dollars.” U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis. Last revised February 25, 2021. <www.bea.gov>

Line 18: “Population (Midperiod, Thousands)”

NOTES:

  • These estimates do not account for the fact that some guns are eliminated through loss, confiscation, damage, or destruction.
  • An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[196] Calculated with data from the report: “Firearms Commerce in the United States Annual Statistical Update 2021.” U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, September 10, 2021. <www.atf.gov>

Pages 1–2: “Exhibit 1. Firearms Manufactured (1986–2019)”

Pages 3–4: “Exhibit 2. Firearms Manufacturers’ Exports (1986–2019)”

Pages 5–6: “Exhibit 3. Firearms Imports (1986–2020)”

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[197] Calculated with data from the report: “Firearms Commerce in the United States Annual Statistical Update 2021.” U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, September 10, 2021. <www.atf.gov>

Pages 1–2: “Exhibit 1. Firearms Manufactured (1986–2019)”

Pages 3–4: “Exhibit 2. Firearms Manufacturers’ Exports (1986–2019)”

Pages 5–6: “Exhibit 3. Firearms Imports (1986–2020)”

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[198] Calculated with data from:

a) Webpage: “In Depth: Topics A to Z: Guns.” Gallup. Accessed December 23, 2021 at <news.gallup.com>

b) Webpage: “Gun Owners Increasingly Cite Crime as Reason for Ownership.” Gallup. November 17, 2021. <news.gallup.com>

“Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted Oct. 1–19, 2021, with a random sample of 823 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. For results based on the total sample of 290 gun owners, the margin of sampling error is ±7 percentage points at the 95% confidence level.

All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.”

c) Webpage: “What Percentage of Americans Own Guns?” Gallup. Updated November 13, 2020. <news.gallup.com>

“Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted Sept. 30–Oct. 15, 2020, with a random sample of 1,035 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.”

NOTE: Emails from Gallup to Just Facts on January 29–30, 2020:

  • 2016 … Results are based on telephone interviews conducted October 5–9, 2016 with a random sample of –1,017—adults, aged 18+, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on this sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level.
  • 2017 … Results are based on telephone interviews conducted October 5–11, 2017 with a random sample of –1,028—adults, ages 18+, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on this sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level.
  • 2018 … Results are based on telephone interviews conducted October 1–10, 2018 with a random sample of –1,019—adults, ages 18+, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on this sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level.
  • 2019 … Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted Oct. 1–13, 2019, with a random sample of 1,526 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±3 percentage points at the 95% confidence level.

d) Report: “Trends in Gun Ownership in the United States, 1972–2018.” General Social Survey, March, 2019. <gssdataexplorer.norc.org>

Page 3: “Table 1. Trends in Household Gun Ownership.”

Page 4: “Table 2. Trends in Personal Ownership of Guns.”

NOTE: Email from General Social Survey to Just Facts on February 3, 2020: “Year … 2016 … GSS Sample size [=] 2867 … Margin of error [=] ±2.85% at the 95% confidence interval level … Year … 2018 … GSS Sample size [=] 2348 … Margin of error [=] ±3.1% at the 95% confidence interval level”

e) Report: “America’s Complex Relationship With Guns.” Pew Research Center, June 22, 2017. <www.pewsocialtrends.org>

Page 74: “Surveys conducted March 13–27, 2017, and April 4–18, 2017 … nationally

representative panel of randomly selected U.S. adults recruited from landline and cellphone

random-digit dial (RDD) surveys. … Most of the data in this report are based on 3,930 respondents who participated in both the March 13 to 27, 2017, and April 4 to 18, 2017, waves of the panel. The margin of sampling error for the full sample of 3,930 respondents is plus or minus 2.8 percentage points.”

f) Poll: “CNN/ORC Poll on Guns in America.” CNN, January 7, 2016. <www.cnn.com>

Page 1: “Interviews with 1,027 adult Americans conducted by telephone by ORC International on January 5–6, 2016. The margin of sampling error for results based on the total sample is plus or minus 3 percentage points.”

g) Poll: “Americans React to the Shooting in Orlando.” CBS News, June 15, 2016. <www.scribd.com>

Page 4: “This poll was conducted by telephone June 13–14, 2016, among a random sample of 1,001 adults nationwide. … The error due to sampling for results based on the entire sample could be plus or minus four percentage points.”

h) Article: “Wide Differences on Most Gun Policies Between Gun Owners and Non-Owners, but Also Some Agreement.” By Ted Van Green. Pew Research Center, August 4, 2021. <www.pewresearch.org>

“A second survey was conducted with 10,606 ATP [Pew Research Center’s American Trends Panel] members from June 14–27, 2021, to assess gun ownership among Americans. The analysis of gun policy views among gun owners and non-owners was based on the 4,042 respondents to both surveys. These surveys are weighted to be representative of the U.S. adult population by gender, race, ethnicity, partisan affiliation, education and other categories. … Measuring gun ownership comes with its own set of challenges. For example, unlike many demographic questions, there is not a definitive data source from the government or elsewhere on how many American adults own guns. This survey, conducted June 14–27, 2021, on Pew Research Center’s online American Trends Panel (ATP), asks about gun ownership by using two separate questions to measure personal and household ownership instead of collecting this information with a single question.”

NOTES:

  • Just Facts requested data on firearm ownership from the U.S. Department of Justice on February 17, 2010. The Department of Justice responded that this information is “not maintained by this Agency.”
  • As documented in the next two footnotes, individuals who refuse to answer poll questions about gun ownership are more likely than not to own a gun or live in a household with a gun. Thus, the upper bound of the ownership figures includes those who refused to answer or said they didn’t know.
  • An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[199] Book: Evaluating Gun Policy: Effects on Crime and Violence. Edited by Jens Ludwig and Philip J. Cook. Brookings Institution Press, 2003.

Chapter 3: “Guns and Burglary.” Comment by David B. Kopel. Pages 74–120.

Page 114:

Household surveys of American gun ownership rather consistently yield disparate results (as low as a third of homes, to as high as half of homes) which are well outside the margin of error—so we know that household surveys are not a particularly accurate reflection of reality. The accuracy of household gun surveys is seriously impaired by the “dark figure” created by gun owners who refuse to disclose their gun ownership to a pollster.

[200] Report: “Gun Ownership in the United States: Measurement Issues and Trends.” By Tom W. Smith, Faith Laken, and Jaesok Son. University of Chicago, NORC, General Social Survey, January 2014. Revised October 2015. <gss.norc.org>

Page 2:

[T]he General Social Surveys (GSSs) conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago with principal support from the National Science Foundation have asked questions about household gun ownership since 1973 and about personal ownership since 1980. The GSSs are national, probability samples of adults living in households in the United States. Interviews are primarily in-person….

Page 4:

[I]n contrast to the validation studies, another body of research finds discrepancies between the gun-ownership reports of husbands and wives. … For example, across all years of the GSS [General Social Survey] (1973–2012), 54.1% of husbands lived in a household with a gun vs. 49.7% of wives (a spousal difference of +4.4 percentage points). … This literature concludes that on average the reports of husbands are more accurate than the reports of wives and therefore that reports by wives underreport the level of household gun ownership.

Page 5:

On the GSS household gun-ownership question, there are three types of item nonresponse—refusals to answer, missing data/no answers, and don’t knows. For 1973 through 2012, 0.9% of the cases were refusals, 0.3% missing/no answers, and 0.1% don’t knows. These missing cases were analyzed to see if gun ownership could be imputed based on their other known characteristics. As Table 1 shows, those refusing have a profile that indicates they are probably disproportionately gun owners. The refusers (0.9% of all cases) are closer to gun owners than non-gun owners in having a hunter, being less supportive of gun control, living in a rural area, and having a male respondent. Missing cases (0.3% of all cases) show a more mixed pattern being closer to gun owners on opposing gun control and living in a rural area, but somewhat closer to non-gun owners on having a hunter and a male respondent. The very small don’t know group (0.1% of all cases) is more like non-gun owners except in their lower support for gun control. Based on this profile (and some less differentiating variables also inspected), it was estimated that about 78% of refusers were gun owners. Because of the small numbers and mixed results, the missing and don’t know groups were not allocated and make up a residual category of 0.4% of all cases.

[201] Article: “What Percentage of Americans Own Guns?” By Lydia Saad. Gallup. Updated November 13, 2020. <news.gallup.com>

Number of interviews … U.S. adults [=] 1,035 … Men [=] 530 … Women [=] 505 … White (non-Hispanic) [=] 768 … Non-White [=] 246 … Republican [=] 325 … Independent [=] 370 … Democrat [=] 314

Personally own a gun … Men [=] 45% … Women [=] 19% … White (non-Hispanic) [=] 38% … Non-White [=] 18% … Republican [=] 50% … Independents [=] 29% … Democrat [=] 18% …

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted Sept. 30–Oct. 15, 2020, with a random sample of 1,035 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 70% cellphone respondents and 30% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.

NOTE: As documented in the next two footnotes, levels of self-declared gun ownership likely understate the actual levels of ownership.

[202] Book: Evaluating Gun Policy: Effects on Crime and Violence. Edited by Jens Ludwig and Philip J. Cook. Brookings Institution Press, 2003.

Chapter 3: “Guns and Burglary.” Comment by David B. Kopel. Pages 74–120.

Page 114:

Household surveys of American gun ownership rather consistently yield disparate results (as low as a third of homes, to as high as half of homes) which are well outside the margin of error—so we know that household surveys are not a particularly accurate reflection of reality. The accuracy of household gun surveys is seriously impaired by the “dark figure” created by gun owners who refuse to disclose their gun ownership to a pollster.

[203] Report: “Gun Ownership in the United States: Measurement Issues and Trends.” By Tom W. Smith, Faith Laken, and Jaesok Son. University of Chicago, NORC, General Social Survey, January 2014. <gss.norc.org>

Page 2:

[T]he General Social Surveys (GSSs) conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago with principal support from the National Science Foundation have asked questions about household gun ownership since 1973 and about personal ownership since 1980. The GSSs are national, probability samples of adults living in households in the United States. Interviews are primarily in-person….

Page 4:

[I]n contrast to the validation studies, another body of research finds discrepancies between the gun-ownership reports of husbands and wives. … For example, across all years of the GSS [General Social Survey] (1973–2012), 54.1% of husbands lived in a household with a gun vs. 49.7% of wives (a spousal difference of +4.4 percentage points). … This literature concludes that on average the reports of husbands are more accurate than the reports of wives and therefore that reports by wives underreport the level of household gun ownership.

Page 5:

On the GSS household gun-ownership question, there are three types of item nonresponse—refusals to answer, missing data/no answers, and don’t knows. For 1973 through 2012, 0.9% of the cases were refusals, 0.3% missing/no answers, and 0.1% don’t knows. These missing cases were analyzed to see if gun ownership could be imputed based on their other known characteristics. As Table 1 shows, those refusing have a profile that indicates they are probably disproportionately gun owners. The refusers (0.9% of all cases) are closer to gun owners than non-gun owners in having a hunter, being less supportive of gun control, living in a rural area, and having a male respondent. Missing cases (0.3% of all cases) show a more mixed pattern being closer to gun owners on opposing gun control and living in a rural area, but somewhat closer to non-gun owners on having a hunter and a male respondent. The very small don’t know group (0.1% of all cases) is more like non-gun owners except in their lower support for gun control. Based on this profile (and some less differentiating variables also inspected), it was estimated that about 78% of refusers were gun owners. Because of the small numbers and mixed results, the missing and don’t know groups were not allocated and make up a residual category of 0.4% of all cases.

[204] Calculated with data from the webpage: “In Depth: Topics A to Z: Guns.” Gallup. Accessed December 23, 2021 at <news.gallup.com>

“(Asked of gun owners) There are many reasons why some people choose to own guns and others do not. What are some of the reasons why you own a gun? [OPEN-ENDED] … 2019

Aug 15–30 % … Personal safety/Protection [=] 63 … Hunting [=] 40 … Recreation/Sport (nonspecific) [=] 11 … Target shooting [=] 4 … .”

CALCULATION: 4% target shooting + 11% recreation/sport = 15% target shooting, recreation, or sport

[205] Data on murders are more accurate than for any other crime because the act of murder produces a dead body.† However, the FBI’s national estimates of murder are incomplete because they:

  • rely on “voluntary” reports “from individual law enforcement agencies that are compiled monthly by state-level agencies.”
  • rarely count “homicides occurring in federal prisons, on military bases, and on Indian reservations.”
  • exclude homicides caused by the deliberate “crashing of a motor vehicle….”‡

A 2014 report by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) explains that data reported by the CDC from death certificates provide “more accurate homicide trends at the national level” and “consistently” show “a higher number and rate of homicides in the United States compared” to FBI data.‡

Nevertheless, death certificates tend to overcount murders because they include:

  • “justifiable homicides” by civilians acting in self-defense,‡ which are not murders.§
  • some justifiable homicides by police, even though these are supposed to be coded as “legal intervention deaths,” not as homicides.#

The 2014 DOJ report states, “A more comprehensive understanding of homicide in the United States can perhaps be achieved by combining the strengths of the two data collection systems.”‡ Therefore, Just Facts uses data from both sources and a scholarly journal to produce murder estimates. This yields figures that are higher than the FBI’s estimates and 4.2% lower than the number of homicides recorded on death certificates. The precise sources used for these calculations are documented in the forthcoming footnote.

NOTES:

  • † Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>
    “The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”
  • ‡ Report: “The Nation’s Two Measures of Homicide.” U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 2014. <bjs.ojp.gov>
  • § Report: “2019 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, September 2020. <ucr.fbi.gov>
    Topic: “Murder.” <ucr.fbi.gov>
    “The FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program defines murder and nonnegligent manslaughter as the willful (nonnegligent) killing of one human being by another. The classification of this offense is based solely on police investigation as opposed to the determination of a court, medical examiner, coroner, jury, or other judicial body. The UCR Program does not include the following situations in this offense classification: deaths caused by negligence, suicide, or accident; justifiable homicides; and attempts to murder or assaults to murder, which are classified as aggravated assaults.”
  • # Paper: “Homicides by Police: Comparing Counts From the National Violent Death Reporting System, Vital Statistics, and Supplementary Homicide Reports.” By Catherine Barber and others. American Journal of Public Health, May 2016. Pages 922–927. <ajph.aphapublications.org>
    Page 924: “For the period 2005 to 2012, we identified 1552 law enforcement homicides that occurred in the 16 NVDRS [National Violent Death Reporting System] states. … [The National] Vital Statistics [system from death certificates] reported 906…. The average annual rate of legal intervention homicides in the 16 NVDRS states over the study period was 0.24 per 100 000 population on the basis of the study count.”

[206] Calculated with data from:

a) Dataset: “Homicide Injury Deaths and Rates Per 100,000, 1999–2020.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. Accessed September 28, 2022 at <wisqars.cdc.gov>

b) Dataset: “Homicide Mortality, Quarterly Provisional Estimates.” U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics. Accessed October 26, 2022 at <www.cdc.gov>

c) Paper: “Homicides by Police: Comparing Counts From the National Violent Death Reporting System, Vital Statistics, and Supplementary Homicide Reports.” By Catherine Barber and others. American Journal of Public Health, May 2016. Pages 922–927. <ajph.aphapublications.org>

d) Report: “2019 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, September 2020. <ucr.fbi.gov>

“Expanded Homicide Data Table 15: Justifiable Homicide by Weapon, Private Citizen, 2015–2019.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[207] Calculated with data from the footnote above and:

a) Dataset: “2020, United States, Homicide Injury Deaths and Rates per 100,000.” U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Accessed November 5, 2022 at <wisqars.cdc.gov>

“Number of Deaths [=] 24,576”

b) Dataset: “2020, United States, Homicide Firearm Deaths and Rates per 100,000.” U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Accessed November 5, 2022 at <wisqars.cdc.gov>

“Number of Deaths [=] 19,384”

CALCULATIONS:

  • 19,384 homicides with firearms / 24,576 homicides = 78.9%
  • 23,551 murders × 78.9% = 18,576

NOTE: As documented here, the FBI’s national crime estimates undercount murders, while the number of homicides recorded on death certificates and reported by the CDC overcount murders. Thus, Just Facts uses data from both sources and a scholarly journal to calculate murder estimates.

[208] Paper: “Armed Resistance to Crime: The Prevalence and Nature of Self-Defense with a Gun.” By Gary Kleck and Marc Gertz. Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, Fall 1995. <scholarlycommons.law.northwestern.edu>

Page 160: “The present survey … was carefully designed to correct all of the known correctable or avoidable flaws of previous surveys…. We interviewed a large nationally representative sample….”

Pages 160–161:

A professional telephone polling firm, Research Network of Tallahassee, Florida, carried out the sampling and interviewing. …

Each interview began with a few general “throat-clearing” questions about problems facing the R’s [respondent’s] community and crime. The interviewers then asked the following question: “Within the past five years, have you yourself or another member of your household used a gun, even if it was not fired, for self-protection or for the protection of property at home, work, or elsewhere? Please do not include military service, police work, or work as a security guard.”

Page 163:

An additional step was taken to minimize the possibility of DGU [defensive gun use] frequency being overstated. The senior author went through interview sheets on every one of the interviews in which a DGU was reported, looking for any indication that the incident might not be genuine. … There were a total of twenty-six cases where at least one of these problematic indications was present. … Estimates using all of the DGU cases are labelled herein as “A” estimates, while the more conservative estimates based only on cases devoid of any problematic indications are labelled “B” estimates.

Page 172:

While estimates of DGU frequency are reliable because they are based on a very large sample of 4,977 cases, results pertaining to the details of DGU incidents are based on 213 or fewer sample cases, and readers should treat these results with appropriate caution.

Page 176:

Another way of assessing how serious these incidents appeared to the victims is to ask them how potentially fatal the encounter was. We asked Rs [respondents]: “If you had not used a gun for protection in this incident, how likely do you think it is that you or someone else would have been killed? Would you say almost certainly not, probably not, might have, probably would have, or almost certainly would have been killed?” Panel K indicates that 15.7% of the Rs stated that they or someone else “almost certainly would have” been killed….

Page 184:

Table 2: Prevalence and Incidence of Civilian Defensive Gun Use, U.S. 1988–1993 … Recall Period [=] Past Five Years … Household … All Guns … % Usedb

… B: [=] 3.456 … Annual Uses … B: [=] 1,029,615

b. Percent of persons (households) with at least one defensive gun use during the five years (one year) preceding the interview.

NOTE: In keeping with Just Facts’ Standards of Credibility, the data cited above is the most cautious plausible data from this study. It is for households (as opposed to individuals) and a five-year recall period based “only on cases devoid of any problematic indications.”

CALCULATIONS:

  • 1,029,615 households per year used a gun for self-defense × 15.7% of defensive gun users thought someone “almost certainly would have been killed” if they “had not used a gun for protection” = 161,650 such incidents
  • 3.456% of households used a gun for self-defense over the previous five years × 15.7% of defensive gun users thought someone “almost certainly would have been killed” if they “had not used a gun for protection” = 0.5% of households

[209] Calculated with data from:

a) Report: “Criminal Victimization, 2021.” By Alexandra Thompson and Susannah N. Tapp. U.S. Department of Justice, September 2022. <bjs.ojp.gov>

Page 2: “Table 1: Number and rate of violent victimizations, by type of crime, 2017–2021. …  Includes threatened, attempted, and completed occurrences of crimes. … Excludes homicide because the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) is based on interviews with victims.”

b) Report: “2020 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation.

“Table 19: Rate: Number of Crimes per 100,000 Inhabitants, Additional Information About Selected Offenses, by Population Group, 2020.” <s3-us-gov-west-1.amazonaws.com>

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[210] The United States government publishes two primary crime measures: The FBI’s “Uniform Crime Report” (UCR) and the Department of Justice’s “National Crime Victimization Survey” (NCVS). The UCR is based upon incidents reported to law enforcement authorities and does not account for unreported crimes. The NCVS is based upon data gathered from extensive interviews, and hence, provides more accurate estimates of crime than the UCR.* The NCVS, however, does not provide data on: murders and nonnegligent manslaughters (because the victims cannot be interviewed), crimes committed against children under the age of 12, and commercial crimes such as robberies of banks and convenience stores.† Therefore, Just Facts uses the NCVS data as a baseline and extrapolates the missing information from UCR and NCVS data.

* Book: Firearms and Violence: A Critical Review. By the Committee to Improve Research and Data on Firearms and the Committee on Law and Justice, National Research Council of the National Academies. Edited by Charles F. Wellford, John V. Pepper, and Carol V. Petrie. National Academies Press, 2005.

Page 21: “The National Crime Victimization Survey … is widely viewed as a ‘gold standard for measuring crime victimization.’

Page 30: “Although the NCVS data do many things right, they are, like any such system, beset with methodological problems of surveys in general as well as particular problems associated with measuring illicit, deviant, and deleterious activities….”

† Report: “The Nation’s Two Crime Measures.” By Michael Planty and Lynn Langton. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, September, 2014. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 1:

The U.S. Department of Justice administers two statistical programs to measure the magnitude, nature, and impact of crime in the nation: the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program and the Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS). Each of these programs produces valuable information about aspects of the nation’s crime problem. Because the UCR and NCVS programs have different purposes, use different methods, and focus on somewhat different aspects of crime, the complementary information they produce together provides a more comprehensive understanding of the nation’s crime problem than either could produce alone. …

The UCR Program currently collects information on murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, arson, and human trafficking. …

The current NCVS collects detailed information on the frequency and nature of the crimes of rape and other sexual assault, robbery, aggravated and simple assault, personal larceny, household burglary, motor vehicle theft, and other theft. Each year, BJS interviews a nationally representative sample of approximately 169,000 persons age 12 or older living in U.S. households. Households remain in the sample for 3.5 years.

Page 2:

The NCVS includes, but the UCR excludes, sexual assault (completed, attempted, and threatened), attempted robberies, verbal threats of rape, simple assault, and crimes not reported to law enforcement. The UCR includes, but the NCVS excludes, homicide, arson, commercial crimes, and crimes against children under age 12. The UCR captures crimes reported to law enforcement, but collects only arrest data for simple assault and sex offenses other than forcible rape.

[211] Webpage: “Glossary.” U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. Accessed November 8, 2022. <bjs.ojp.gov>

Aggravated Assault

An attack or attempted attack with a weapon, regardless of whether the victim is injured, or an attack without a weapon when serious injury results.

Assault

An unlawful physical attack or threat of attack. Assaults may be classified as aggravated or simple. Rape, attempted rape, and sexual assaults are excluded from this category, as well as robbery and attempted robbery. The severity of assaults ranges from minor threats to nearly fatal incidents.

Robbery

Completed or attempted theft, directly from a person, of property or cash by force or threat of force, with or without a weapon, and with or without injury.

Simple Assault

Attack without a weapon resulting either in no injury, minor injury (e.g., bruises, black eyes, cuts, scratches, or swelling), or an undetermined injury requiring fewer than two days of hospitalization. Also includes attempted assault without a weapon.

With minor injury—An attack without a weapon resulting in injuries such as bruises, black eyes, cuts, or an undetermined injury requiring fewer than two days of hospitalization.

Without injury—An attempted assault without a weapon but not resulting in injury.

[212] Report: “2020 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Topic: “Murder.” <s3-us-gov-west-1.amazonaws.com>

The FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program defines murder and nonnegligent manslaughter as the willful (nonnegligent) killing of one human being by another.

The classification of this offense is based solely on police investigation as opposed to the determination of a court, medical examiner, coroner, jury, or other judicial body. The UCR Program does not include the following situations in this offense classification:

deaths caused by negligence, suicide, or accident; justifiable homicides; and attempts to murder or assaults to murder, which are classified as aggravated assaults.

[213] Calculated with data from:

a) Report: “Criminal Victimization, 2021.” By Alexandra Thompson and Susannah N. Tapp. U.S. Department of Justice, September 2022. <bjs.ojp.gov>

Page 2: “Table 1: Number and rate of violent victimizations, by type of crime, 2017–2021. …  Includes threatened, attempted, and completed occurrences of crimes. … Excludes homicide because the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) is based on interviews with victims.”

b) Report: “2020 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation.

“Table 19: Rate: Number of Crimes per 100,000 Inhabitants, Additional Information About Selected Offenses, by Population Group, 2020.” <s3-us-gov-west-1.amazonaws.com>

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[214] Paper: “Measuring Civilian Defensive Firearm Use: A Methodological Experiment.” By David McDowall and others. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, March 2000. <link.springer.com>

Page 7:

The most important of the other set of questions asked:

Within the past 12 months, have you yourself used a gun, even if it was not fired, to protect yourself or someone else, or for the protection of property at home, work, or elsewhere?

This is largely identical to the standard question from the other surveys, but the reference period is 1 year rather than 5 years. The question also refers to the respondent alone, rather than to all household members.

Page 8:

Because gun ownership is a strong correlate of firearm resistance (e.g., Kleck and Gertz, 1996, p. 187), we selected a national sample from commercial lists of likely gun owners. Of the eventual respondents, 83% did report the presence of a gun in their home. …

This left 3006 households, an 81% response rate. The interviewers selected a single respondent from within each household. In a random 75% of the cases, the interviewers asked for the male head of household. In the remaining 25% they asked for the female head.

Page 10:

Table II. Types of Incidents of Firearm Defense….

Type of Incident

Number of

Respondents

Portion of

Respondents

No incident

2,851

94.8%

Civilian against offender, clear

48

1.6%

Civilian against offender, ambiguous

24

0.8%

Law enforcement and security work

30

1.0%

Civilian against possible offender, no contact

20

0.7%

Against animals

13

0.4%

Carries gun for protection only

10

0.3%

Target shooting

8

0.3%

Military duties

2

0.1%

[215] As documented in the previous footnote, this study did not use a nationally representative population. To correct for this, Just Facts used the following equation:

t = c × g × p / [n × r × [[s × d / f] + [(1-s) × (1-d) / (1-f)]]]

Where:

t = Total defensive gun uses in a nationally representative population

c = Defensive gun uses in this survey, civilian against offender, clear = 48

g = Minimum proportion of households with a gun = 0.34 *

p = Population, ages 25–70 = 158,799,375 †

n = Survey sample size = 3,006

r = Proportion of survey respondents with a gun in their home = .83

s = Proportion of survey respondents who are female = .25

d = Proportion of defensive gun uses by females = .46 ‡

f = Proportion of population (ages 25–70) who are females = .51 †

NOTES:

  • In keeping with Just Facts’ Standards of Credibility, we have given preferentiality to figures that are contrary to our viewpoints and used the most cautious plausible interpretations of this data. Details of how we have done this are explained in the following notes.
  • This equation operates under the conservative assumption that respondents in homes without firearms had no defensive gun uses, even though such people may have used others’ firearms for defense. In a range of surveys stretching over the previous 30 years, 34% is the lowest figure we have found for the percentage of homes with guns. [Paper: “Estimating Intruder-Related Firearm Retrievals in U.S. Households, 1994.” By Robin M. Ikeda (U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and others. Violence and Victims, Winter 1997. Pages 363–372. <www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov>]
  • * Per page 369 of this study: “A second concern about representativeness of the sample is that the prevalence of households with firearms in our survey (34%) is lower than that reported in polls (41%) for the same year (Maguire & Pastore, 1995). … It is similar, however, to that observed in the 1994 National Health Interview Survey (37%) (personal communication, National Center for Health Statistics) and another national telephone survey about using firearms for protection (36%) (Kleck & Gertz, 1995).”
  • † This survey selected respondents by asking for the male/female head of household. Just Facts used a conservative estimate of this population by only including people aged 25 to 70 years old, which amounted to 158,799,375 people in 2000. [Calculated with the dataset: “U.S. Interim Population Projections by Single Year of Age, Sex, Race, and Hispanic Origin: 2000-2050.” U.S. Census Bureau. Accessed April 28, 2010 at <www.census.gov>. An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.]
  • ‡ Paper: “Armed Resistance to Crime: The Prevalence and Nature of Self-Defense with a Gun.” By Gary Kleck and Marc Gertz. Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, Fall 1995. <scholarlycommons.law.northwestern.edu>. Page 178: “Perhaps the most surprising finding of the survey was the large share of reported DGUs [defensive gun uses] that involved women. Because of their lower victimization rates and lower gun ownership rates, one would expect women to account for far less than half of DGUs. Nevertheless, 46% of our sample DGUs involved women.”

[216] Paper: “Armed Resistance to Crime: The Prevalence and Nature of Self-Defense with a Gun.” By Gary Kleck and Marc Gertz. Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, Fall 1995. <scholarlycommons.law.northwestern.edu>

Page 160: “The present survey … was carefully designed to correct all of the known correctable or avoidable flaws of previous surveys…. We interviewed a large nationally representative sample….”

Pages 160–161:

A professional telephone polling firm, Research Network of Tallahassee, Florida, carried out the sampling and interviewing. …

Each interview began with a few general “throat-clearing” questions about problems facing the R’s [respondent’s] community and crime. The interviewers then asked the following question: “Within the past five years, have you yourself or another member of your household used a gun, even if it was not fired, for self-protection or for the protection of property at home, work, or elsewhere? Please do not include military service, police work, or work as a security guard.”

Page 163:

An additional step was taken to minimize the possibility of DGU [defensive gun use] frequency being overstated. The senior author went through interview sheets on every one of the interviews in which a DGU was reported, looking for any indication that the incident might not be genuine. … There were a total of twenty-six cases where at least one of these problematic indications was present. … Estimates using all of the DGU cases are labelled herein as “A” estimates, while the more conservative estimates based only on cases devoid of any problematic indications are labelled “B” estimates.

Page 172: “While estimates of DGU frequency are reliable because they are based on a very large sample of 4,977 cases, results pertaining to the details of DGU incidents are based on 213 or fewer sample cases, and readers should treat these results with appropriate caution.”

Page 184:

Table 2: Prevalence and Incidence of Civilian Defensive Gun Use, U.S. 1988–1993 … Recall Period [=] Past Five Years … Household … All Guns … % Usedb

… B: [=] 3.456 … Annual Uses … B: [=] 1,029,615

b. Percent of persons (households) with at least one defensive gun use during the five years (one year) preceding the interview.

NOTE: In keeping with Just Facts’ Standards of Credibility, the data cited above is the most cautious plausible data from this study. It is for households (as opposed to individuals) and a five-year recall period based “only on cases devoid of any problematic indications.”

[217] Paper: “Estimating Intruder-Related Firearm Retrievals in U.S. Households, 1994.” By Robin M. Ikeda (U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and others. Violence and Victims, Winter 1997. <www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov>

Page 363:

To estimate the frequency of firearm retrieval because of a known or presumed intruder, the authors analyzed data from a 1994 national random digit dialing telephone survey (n = 5,238 interviews). … National projections based on these self-reports reveal an estimated 1,896,842 (95% CI [confidence interval] = 1,480,647–2,313,035) incidents in which a firearm was retrieved, but no intruder was seen; 503,481 (95% CI = 305,093–701,870) incidents occurred in which an intruder was seen, and 497,646 (95% CI = 266,060–729,231) incidents occurred in which the intruder was seen and reportedly scared away by the firearm.

Page 364:

A specified random selection procedure was used to ensure that approximately one half of respondents were male and one half were female. If more than one eligible individual was in the selected gender category, the interviewer asked for the respondent with the most recent birthday. Households occupied by minorities were oversampled to ensure adequate minority representation and then weighted to adjust for unequal selection probabilities.

[218] Press release: “Presidential Memorandum—Engaging in Public Health Research on the Causes and Prevention of Gun Violence.” White House, January 16, 2013. <obamawhitehouse.archives.gov>

Therefore, by the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, I hereby direct the following:

Section 1. Research. The Secretary of Health and Human Services (Secretary), through the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other scientific agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services, shall conduct or sponsor research into the causes of gun violence and the ways to prevent it. The Secretary shall begin by identifying the most pressing research questions with the greatest potential public health impact, and by assessing existing public health interventions being implemented across the Nation to prevent gun violence.

[219] Report: “Priorities for Research to Reduce the Threat of Firearm-Related Violence.” Edited by Alan I. Leshner and others. Institute of Medicine and National Research Council of the National Academies of Science, 2013. <www.nap.edu>

Pages 1–2:

In January 2013, President Obama issued 23 executive orders directing federal agencies to improve knowledge of the causes of firearm violence, the interventions that might prevent it, and strategies to minimize its public health burden. One of these executive orders noted that “in addition to being a law enforcement challenge, firearm violence is also a serious public health issue that affects thousands of individuals, families, and communities across the Nation,” and directed the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), along with other relevant federal agencies, to immediately begin identifying the most pressing firearm-related violence research problems.

The CDC and the CDC Foundation2 requested that the Institute of Medicine (IOM), in collaboration with the National Research Council (NRC), convene a committee of experts to develop a potential research agenda focusing on the public health aspects of firearm-related violence—its causes, approaches to interventions that could prevent it, and strategies to minimize its health burden. In accordance with the CDC’s charge, the committee did not focus on public health surveillance and potentially related behavioral/mental health issues, as these will be addressed separately.

[220] Report: “Priorities for Research to Reduce the Threat of Firearm-Related Violence.” Edited by Alan I. Leshner and others. Institute of Medicine and National Research Council of the National Academies of Science, 2013. <www.nap.edu>

Page 15: “Defensive use of guns by crime victims is a common occurrence, although the exact number remains disputed (Cook and Ludwig, 1996; Kleck, 2001a).”

[221] Report: “Priorities for Research to Reduce the Threat of Firearm-Related Violence.” Edited by Alan I. Leshner and others. Institute of Medicine and National Research Council of the National Academies of Science, 2013. <www.nap.edu>

Page 15: “Almost all national survey estimates indicate that defensive gun uses by victims are at least as common as offensive uses by criminals, with estimates of annual uses ranging from about 500,000 to more than 3 million (Kleck, 2001a), in the context of about 300,000 violent crimes involving firearms in 2008 (BJS, 2010).”

[222] Report: “Priorities for Research to Reduce the Threat of Firearm-Related Violence.” Edited by Alan I. Leshner and others. Institute of Medicine and National Research Council of the National Academies of Science, 2013. <www.nap.edu>

Page 15:

On the other hand, some scholars point to a radically lower estimate of only 108,000 annual defensive uses based on the National Crime Victimization Survey (Cook and others, 1997). The variation in these numbers remains a controversy in the field. The estimate of 3 million defensive uses per year is based on an extrapolation from a small number of responses taken from more than 19 national surveys. The former estimate of 108,000 is difficult to interpret because respondents were not asked specifically about defensive gun use.

[223] Report: “The Science of Gun Policy: A Critical Synthesis of Research Evidence on the Effects of Gun Policies in the United States.” By Andrew R. Morral and others. RAND Corporation, August 2018. <www.rand.org>

Page 279:

As noted earlier, however, there are also good reasons to suspect that the NCVS [National Crime Victimization Survey] underestimates the true number of DGUs [Defensive Gun Uses]. The NCVS provides an opportunity for respondents to describe DGUs only in the context of certain types of crimes. DGUs resulting from crimes not covered by the NCVS will likely be undercounted. DGUs may occur in the context of suspected crimes that respondents on the NCVS might not judge to qualify as events in which they were a victim of a crime, in which case those DGUs would be undercounted. At the time research on DGUs was being conducted, the NCVS did not explicitly ask crime victims whether they used a firearm to defend themselves. Thus, some DGUs might go uncounted if respondents choose not to volunteer their use of a gun when asked whether they attempted to resist the perpetrator (Kleck, 1999). Finally, NCVS respondents victimized while engaging in illegal activity may not volunteer these experiences, meaning any associated DGUs would not be counted (McDowall and Wiersema, 1994).

[224] Report: “Priorities for Research to Reduce the Threat of Firearm-Related Violence.” Edited by Alan I. Leshner and others. Institute of Medicine and National Research Council of the National Academies of Science, 2013. <www.nap.edu>

Pages 15–16:

A different issue is whether defensive uses of guns, however numerous or rare they may be, are effective in preventing injury to the gun-wielding crime victim. Studies that directly assessed the effect of actual defensive uses of guns (i.e., incidents in which a gun was “used” by the crime victim in the sense of attacking or threatening an offender) have found consistently lower injury rates among gun-using crime victims compared with victims who used other self-protective strategies (Kleck, 1988; Kleck and DeLone, 1993; Southwick, 2000; Tark and Kleck, 2004). Effectiveness of defensive tactics, however, is likely to vary across types of victims, types of offenders, and circumstances of the crime, so further research is needed both to explore these contingencies and to confirm or discount earlier findings.

Even when defensive use of guns is effective in averting death or injury for the gun user in cases of crime, it is still possible that keeping a gun in the home or carrying a gun in public—concealed or open carry—may have a different net effect on the rate of injury. For example, if gun ownership raises the risk of suicide, homicide, or the use of weapons by those who invade the homes of gun owners, this could cancel or outweigh the beneficial effects of defensive gun use (Kellermann and others, 1992, 1993, 1995). Although some early studies were published that relate to this issue, they were not conclusive, and this is a sufficiently important question that it merits additional, careful exploration.

[225] Book: Armed and Considered Dangerous: A Survey of Felons and Their Firearms (Expanded edition). By James D. Wright and Peter D. Rossi. Aldine De Gruyter, 1986 (Expanded edition published in 1994).

Page 1:

Almost all of the information presented here was obtained from a survey of men serving sentences for felony offenses in 11 state prisons scattered throughout the country. However uncertain one may be about their reliability as sources, convicted criminals are about the only source of empirical information on this topic that can be tapped at reasonable cost. (We also show later that convicted felons are not totally unreliable informants.)

Page 26: “[W]e restricted the study to felons who had been out ‘on the street’ recently enough to possess useful, current information; operationally, this meant a restriction to men who began their current prison term on or after 1 January 1979.”

Page 32:

The definitive study of the quality of prisoner self-report data is Marquis (1981), a data quality analysis of the RAND “Criminal Careers” survey. In this study, data quality was assessed by comparing prisoners’ self reports with information contained in official criminal justice records. Since the format and procedures of the RAND survey were very similar to those followed in our survey, it is reasonable to assume that Marquis’ findings generalize. Summarizing briefly, Marquis found:

1. There is no evidence that prisoners attempt to deny salient aspects of their criminal past. …

2. Comparisons of self-reported conviction-offense data with official records showed that “on a general level, the data are close to unbiased” (Marquis, 1981: 32). Moderate biases were found on some items, but in general, reliability of the self-report data was “moderately high.”

Page 155:

2. Have you ever been scared off, shot at, wounded, or captured by an armed victim? No: 66%, Yes: 34%, (N) = (1673)

3. Was there ever a time in your life when you decided not to do a crime because you knew or believed that the victim was carrying a gun? No, never: 61%, Yes, just once: 10%, Yes, a few times: 22%, Yes, many times: 8%, (N) = (1627)

4. [H]ave any of the criminals you have known personally ever been scared off, shot at, wounded, or captured by an armed victim? No, none: 31%, Yes, but only one: 10%, Yes, a few: 48%, Yes, many: 11%, (N) = (1627)

CALCULATIONS:

  • 10% of felons decided not to commit a crime in one instance because they thought the victim had a gun + 22% “a few times” + 8% “many times” = 40% decided not to commit a crime because they thought the victim was carrying a gun
  • 10% of felons knew one criminal “scared off, shot at, wounded or captured by an armed victim” + 48% knew “a few” + 11% knew “many” = 69% knew criminals “scared off, shot at, wounded or captured by an armed victim”

[226] Calculated with data from:

a) Report: “Provisional Life Expectancy Estimates for 2021.” By Elizabeth Arias and others. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics, August 2022. <www.cdc.gov>

b) Dataset: “Homicide Mortality, Quarterly Provisional Estimates.” U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics. Accessed October 26, 2022 at <www.cdc.gov>

c) Just Facts’ estimates of justifiable homicides, which are detailed above.

NOTES:

  • The methodology to compute the lifetime likelihood of murder was created by a licensed actuary. The actuary doubled-checked this methodology using a different approach that yielded the same results. The results were also tripled-checked by a Ph.D. mathematician and quadrupled-checked by a Ph.D. biostatician.
  • An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[227] Paper: “The Lethality of Criminal Assault 1960–1999.” By Anthony R. Harris and others. Homicide Studies, May 1, 2002. Pages 128–166. <www.universitychurchchicago.org>

Page 128: “Starting from the basic view that homicides are aggravated assaults with the outcome of the victim’s death, we assembled evidence from national data sources to show that the principal explanation of the downward trend in lethality involves parallel developments in medical technology and related medical support services that have suppressed the homicide rate compared to what it would be had such progress not been made.”

Page 136: “A number of UCR [FBI Uniform Crime Report] and other data sources were used in our analyses. The first dataset used contains annual UCR national-level rates of homicides and aggravated assaults known to the police from 1960 to 1999.”

Page 137:

There is little question about the validity of the UCR-derived homicide count, the sole term in the numerator of the measure and, along with the aggravated assault count, the second term in the lethality denominator. Though the UCR offenses known-based national homicide rate falls consistently about 5% below the gold standard Vital Statistics (NCHS) rate in the period examined, the correlation of the UCR offenses known-based national homicide rate with the Vital Statistics homicide rate is extremely high (r = .9947). Thus, while compared to the Vital Statistics homicide count, the UCR offenses known count leads to a systemic 5% or so underestimate of criminal lethality,7 the difference is more or less constant across time and for the purpose of symmetry does not seriously vitiate the use of UCR counts.

A more complicated set of issues concerns the use of aggravated assaults as an historically unbiased measure of life-threatening, criminally induced injury. … [T]he shortcomings inherent in UCR aggravated assault data are well known…. These shortcomings basically concern variation in citizens’ perceptions and reporting of violent acts—especially among acquaintances, friends, and intimates—as criminal assaults rather than as civil problems, as well as substantial long-term and jurisdictional de facto discretion in the police use of the aggravated assault category to record known assaults ranging from criminal threats of injury with weapons, to assaults producing very minor injuries, to assaults producing potentially lethal trauma.

Pages 141–142: “It is worth noting that the second of the two periods of greatest lethality drops, 1960–1965 and 1973–1978, occurs on the heels of the American involvement in Vietnam, quite likely the kind of post-war period of great gain in trauma care identified by medical historians (Rosen and Anderson, 1998; Trunkey, 2000.)”

Page 147:

Table 1.3. Breakdown of Monthly Assaultsa & Lethality by Weaponry for 1964 & 1999 …

Firearms … 1964 Lethality [=] 0.1551 …

Unadjusted 1999 Lethality [=] 0.0539 …

Lethality Drop [=] –65.21% …

a Assaults = Homicides + Aggravated Assaults

Page 157:

Essential here are basic developments in telecommunication services, from the simple proliferation of 911 emergency telephone dialing, radio dispatched communications between emergency service workers, to beeper services for MDs, to the use of cell phones by witnesses of accidents and assaults on isolated highways and streets. Developments in open heart, transplant surgery, emergency medicine, trauma centers and systems, and the training levels of prehospital trauma personnel are important examples of medical progress, as is the development and proliferation of such medical hardware as Computerized Tomographic Scanners (CTs) and portable defibrillators. By no means unimportant here is the simple historical proliferation of local and county hospitals throughout the nation.

[228] Report: “Lifetime Likelihood of Victimization.” By Herbert Koppel. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, March 1987. <www.ncjrs.gov>

Page 1:

Annual victimization rates alone do not convey the full impact of crime as it affects people. No one would express his or her concern by saying, “I am terribly afraid of being mugged between January and December of this year.” People are worried about the possibility that at some time in their lives they will be robbed or raped or assaulted, or their houses will be burglarized.

Annual rates can provide a false sense of security by masking the real impact of crime. Upon hearing that the homicide rate is about 8 to 10 per 100,000 population, one feels safe; after all, 1 chance in 10,000 is not very frightening. Actually, however, at recent homicide rates about 1 of every 133 Americans will become a murder victim; for black males the proportion is estimated to be 1 of every 30.1 Similarly, while 16 out of 10,000 women are rape victims annually, the lifetime chances of suffering a rape are much greater.

The problem lies with people’s perception of the meaning of annual rates with respect to their own lives. If the Earth revolved around the sun in 180 days, all of our annual crime rates would be halved, but we would not be safer. …

Because of the assumptions involved in the calculations and because the data derive from a sample survey, the numbers presented in this report are estimates only; they should be interpreted only as indications of approximate magnitude, not as exact measures. Essentially they are calculated values of lifetime risk rather than descriptions of what has been observed.

Page 2:

The estimates of lifetime likelihood of victimization are derived under the assumption that, throughout their lifetimes, people in the U.S. have incurred, and will continue to incur, criminal victimization at the same annual rates as were observed in the years 1975 through 1984.”

Table 1: Lifetime likelihood of victimization

Percent of Persons Who Will be Victimized by Violent Crime Starting at 12 Years of Age

Total

Number of Victimizations

One or More

One

Two

Three or More

Violent Crimes, Total*

83%

30%

27%

25%

Violent Crimes, Completed*

42%

32%

9%

2%

* Includes rape, robbery, and assault.

CALCULATION: 27% of Americans victimized twice + 25% of Americans victimized three or more times = 52% of Americans victimized more than once

[229] Report: “Firearm Use by Offenders.” By Caroline Wolf Harlow. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, November 2001. Revised 2/4/2002. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 1: “Among inmates in prison for homicide, a sexual assault, robbery, assault or other violent crime, 30% of State offenders and 35% of Federal offenders carried a firearm when committing the crime.”

Page 2: “Data for this report are based primarily on personal interviews with large nationally representative samples of State and Federal prison inmates.”

Page 13: “A total of 14,285 interviews were completed for the State survey and 4,041 for the Federal survey, for overall response rates of 92.5% in the State survey and 90.2% in the Federal survey.”

[230] Report: “Source and Use of Firearms Involved in Crimes: Survey of Prison Inmates, 2016.” By Mariel Alper and Lauren Glaze. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, January 2019. <bjs.ojp.gov>

Page 1: “Based on the 2016 Survey of Prison Inmates (SPI), about 1 in 5 (21%) of all state and federal prisoners reported that they had possessed or carried a firearm when they committed the offense for which they were serving time in prison….”

Page 2:

Statistics in this report are based on self-reported data collected through face-to-face interviews with a national sample of state and federal prisoners in the 2016 SPI. … The 2016 SPI data collection was conducted from January through October 2016. The SPI was formerly known as the Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities (SISFCF). The Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) has periodically conducted the survey since the 1970s, with the most recent iteration fielded in 2004. The survey collects information from prisoners on a variety of topics, including firearm possession during the crime for which a prisoner was serving time and how the firearm was used during the crime. It also collects information on the method, source, and process that prisoners used to obtain the firearm. …

Terms and Definitions

Firearm possession – carrying or possessing at least one firearm when the offense for which prisoners were serving a sentence was committed.

Page 10:

The target population for the 2016 SPI was prisoners ages 18 and older who were held in a state prison or had a sentence to federal prison in the United States during 2016. Similar to prior iterations, the 2016 survey was a stratified two-stage sample design in which prisons were selected in the first stage and prisoners within sampled facilities were selected in the second stage. The SPI sample was selected from a universe of 2,001 unique prisons (1,808 state and 193 federal) that were either enumerated in the 2012 Census of State and Federal Adult Correctional Facilities or had opened between the completion of the census and July 2014 when the SPI sample of prisons was selected. A total of 364 prisons (306 state and 58 federal) participated in the 2016 survey out of the 385 selected (324 state and 61 federal) for interviewing. The first-stage response rate (i.e., the response rate among selected prisons) was 98.4% (98.1% among state prisons and 100% among federal prisons).3 A total of 24,848 prisoners participated (20,064 state and 4,784 federal) in the 2016 SPI based on a sample of 37,058 prisoners (30,348 state and 6,710 federal). The second-stage response rate (i.e., the response rate among selected prisoners) was 70.0% (69.3% among state prisoners and 72.8% among federal prisoners).4

[231] Report: “Firearm Violence, 1993–2011.” By Michael Planty and Jennifer L. Truman. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, May 2013. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 13:

In 2004, an estimated 16% of state prison inmates and 18% of federal inmates reported that they used, carried, or possessed a firearm when they committed the crime for which they were serving a prison sentence (table 12). …

Table 12: Possession of Firearms by State and Federal Prison Inmates at Time of Offense, By Type of Firearm, 1997 and 2004 … 2004 … Total … State [=] 15.8% … Federal [=] 17.8% …

Note: Includes only inmates with a current conviction. Estimates may differ from previously published BJS reports. … Source: Bureau of Justice Statistics, Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities, 1997 and 2004.

Page 17: “Surveys of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities (SISCF and SIFCF) … have provided nationally representative data on state prison inmates and sentenced federal inmates held in federally owned and operated facilities. … In 2004, 14,499 state prisoners in 287 state prisons and 3,686 federal prisoners in 39 federal prisons were interviewed.”

[232] Report: “2019 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, Fall 2020. <ucr.fbi.gov>

“Offenses Cleared.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

Pages 1–2 (of PDF):

In the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program, law enforcement agencies can clear, or “close,” offenses in one of two ways: by arrest or by exceptional means. Although an agency may administratively close a case, that does not necessarily mean that the agency can clear the offense for UCR purposes. To clear an offense within the UCR Program’s guidelines, the reporting agency must adhere to certain criteria, which are outlined in the following text. (Note: The UCR Program does not distinguish between offenses cleared by arrest and those cleared by exceptional means in collecting or publishing data via the traditional Summary Reporting System.)

Cleared by Arrest

In the UCR Program, a law enforcement agency reports that an offense is cleared by arrest, or solved for crime reporting purposes, when three specific conditions have been met. The three conditions are that at least one person has been:

• Arrested.

• Charged with the commission of the offense.

• Turned over to the court for prosecution (whether following arrest, court summons, or police notice).

In its clearance calculations, the UCR Program counts the number of offenses that are cleared, not the number of persons arrested. The arrest of one person may clear several crimes, and the arrest of many persons may clear only one offense. In addition, some clearances that an agency records in a particular calendar year, such as 2019, may pertain to offenses that occurred in previous years.

Cleared by Exceptional Means

In certain situations, elements beyond law enforcement’s control prevent the agency from arresting and formally charging the offender. When this occurs, the agency can clear the offense exceptionally. Law enforcement agencies must meet the following four conditions in order to clear an offense by exceptional means.

The agency must have:

• Identified the offender.

• Gathered enough evidence to support an arrest, make a charge, and turn over the offender to the court for prosecution.

• Identified the offender’s exact location so that the suspect could be taken into custody immediately.

• Encountered a circumstance outside the control of law enforcement that prohibits the agency from arresting, charging, and prosecuting the offender.

Examples of exceptional clearances include, but are not limited to, the death of the offender (e.g., suicide or justifiably killed by police or citizen); the victim’s refusal to cooperate with the prosecution after the offender has been identified; or the denial of extradition because the offender committed a crime in another jurisdiction and is being prosecuted for that offense. In the UCR Program, the recovery of property alone does not clear an offense. …

In the nation in 2019, 45.5 percent of violent crimes and 17.2 percent of property crimes were cleared by arrest or exceptional means.

When considering clearances of violent crimes, 61.4 percent of murder offenses, 52.3 percent of aggravated assault offenses, 32.9 percent of rape offenses, and 30.5 percent of robbery offenses were cleared.

[233] NOTE: As shown in the following three articles, the data cited above is suspect, because it is based on reports from local law enforcement agencies:

a) Article: “Retired Officers Raise Questions on Crime Data.” By William K. Rashbaum. New York Times, February 6, 2010. <www.nytimes.com>

“More than a hundred retired New York Police Department captains and higher-ranking officers said in a survey that the intense pressure to produce annual crime reductions led some supervisors and precinct commanders to manipulate crime statistics, according to two criminologists studying the department.”

b) Article: “Brooklyn’s 81st Precinct Probed by NYPD for Fudging Stats; Felonies Allegedly Marked as Misdemeanors.” By Rocco Parascandola. New York Daily News, February 1, 2010. <www.nydailynews.com>

“A Brooklyn precinct is under investigation for manipulating statistics to make its cops look like better crimefighters, the Daily News has learned. … Schoolcraft told The News the top brass are so concerned with numbers that one precinct lieutenant is known as ‘The Shredder’ because he’s often spotted destroying documents.”

c) Article: “Reducing Rape with an Eraser.” By Judith Riesman. Dr. Judith Riesman, September 12, 2006. <www.drjudithreisman.com>

U.S. News and World Report (April 24, 2000) said, ‘‘facing political heat to cut crime in the city, investigators in the New York PPD’s Sex Crime Unit sat on (thousands of) reports of rapes and other sexual assaults.’’ One officer stated; ‘‘The way crime was solved was with an eraser.’’

In 2000 even the FBI admitted that one district ‘‘failed to report between 13,000 and 37,000 major crimes.’’ ‘‘A 2000 Philadelphia Inquirer report found from 1997–1999, of 300,000 sex crime reports, thousands of rapes got relabeled ‘‘investigation of persons’’ or ‘‘investigation, protection, and medical examination’’—non-crime codes.’’

[234] Paper: “The Decline of Arrest Clearances For Criminal Homicide: Causes, Correlates, and Third Parties.” By Marc Riedel and John Jarvis. Criminal Justice Policy Review, January 1, 1999. Pages 279–306. <cjp.sagepub.com>

“The percent of offenders arrested for murder in the United States has declined in all reporting cities from 92% in 1960 to 66% in 1997.”

[235] Report: “2020 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, Fall 2021.

“Offenses Cleared.” <s3-us-gov-west-1.amazonaws.com>

Page 2 (of PDF):

In the nation in 2020, 41.7 percent of violent crimes and 14.6 percent of property crimes were cleared by arrest or exceptional means.

When considering clearances of violent crimes, 54.4 percent of murder offenses, 46.4 percent of aggravated assault offenses, 30.6 percent of rape offenses, and 28.8 percent of robbery offenses were cleared.

[236] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, September 16, 2022. Accessed November 9, 2022 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[237] See Just Facts’ research on racial issues and unsolved murders.

[238] Article: “Victim’s Sex, Race Affect Homicide Clearance Rates.” By Thomas Hargrove (University of Maryland criminologist). Scripps Howard News Service, 2010.

The deliberate killings of men, members of racial and ethnic minorities and young adults are much less likely to be solved than other kinds of homicides, according to a Scripps Howard News Service analysis of detailed FBI computer files of more than half a million homicides committed from 1980 to 2008. …

As a result, there are clear and sometimes cruel patterns to the victims listed among the nation’s 185,000 unsolved homicides since 1980.

[239] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[240] See Just Facts’ research on racial issues and unsolved murders.

[241] Calculated with data from:

a) Report: “Criminal Victimization, 2020.” By Rachel E. Morgan and Alexandra Thompson, U.S. Department of Justice, September 2021. <bjs.ojp.gov>

Page 2: “Table 1: Number and rate of violent victimizations, by type of crime, 2016–2020 … 2019 … Aggravated assault [=] 1,019,490.”

b) Dataset: “2019 Crime in the United States, Table 29: Estimated Number of Arrests, United States, 2019.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Fall 2020. <ucr.fbi.gov>

“Aggravated assault [=] 385,278”

CALCULATION: 1,019,490 aggravated assaults / 385,278 arrests for aggravated assaults = 2.6

[242] Webpage: “Definitions.” U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. Accessed December 31, 2021 at <www.bjs.gov>

Aggravated Assault

An attack or attempted attack with a weapon, regardless of whether an injury occurred, and an attack without a weapon when serious injury results.

With injury—An attack without a weapon when serious injury results or an attack with a weapon involving any injury. Serious injury includes broken bones, lost teeth, internal injuries, loss of consciousness, and any unspecified injury requiring two or more days of hospitalization.

Threatened with a weapon—Threat or attempted attack by an offender armed with a gun, knife, or other object used as a weapon that does not result in victim injury.

[243] Report: “The Nation’s Two Crime Measures.” By Michael Planty and Lynn Langton. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, September, 2014. <www.bjs.gov>


Page 1:

The U.S. Department of Justice administers two statistical programs to measure the magnitude, nature, and impact of crime in the nation: the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program and the Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS). Each of these programs produces valuable information about aspects of the nation’s crime problem. Because the UCR and NCVS programs have different purposes, use different methods, and focus on somewhat different aspects of crime, the complementary information they produce together provides a more comprehensive understanding of the nation’s crime problem than either could produce alone.

[244] Book: Firearms and Violence: A Critical Review. By the Committee to Improve Research and Data on Firearms and the Committee on Law and Justice, National Research Council of the National Academies. Edited by Charles F. Wellford, John V. Pepper, and Carol V. Petrie. National Academies Press, 2005.


Page 21: “The National Crime Victimization Survey … is widely viewed as a “gold standard for measuring crime victimization.”


Page 30: “Although the NCVS [National Crime Victimization Survey] data do many things right, they are, like any such system, beset with methodological problems of surveys in general as well as particular problems associated with measuring illicit, deviant, and deleterious activities….”

[245] Calculated with data from:

a) Report: “2006 Crime in the United States, Murder.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, September 2007. <www2.fbi.gov>

“The Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program defines murder and nonnegligent manslaughter as the willful (nonnegligent) killing of one human being by another. … An estimated 17,034 persons were murdered nationwide in 2006….”

b) Dataset: “2006 Crime in the United States, Expanded Homicide Data Table 2: Murder Victims by Age, Sex, and Race, 2006.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, September 2007. <www2.fbi.gov>

c) Report: “Criminal Victimization, 2006.” By Michael Rand and Shannan Catalano. U.S. Department of Justice. December 2007. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 2: “Table 2. Criminal victimization, numbers and rates, 2006 … Rape/sexual assault [=] 272,350 … Robbery [=] 711,570 … Aggravated assault [=] 1,354,750 … Victimization rates are per 1,000 persons age 12 or older…. Excludes murder because the NCVS [National Crime Victimization Survey] is based on interviews with victims and therefore cannot measure murder.”

d) Report: “Felony Sentences in State Courts, 2006 Statistical Tables.” By Sean Rosenmerkel and others. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, December 2009. Revised 11/22/2010. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 1: “Felonies are widely defined as crimes with the potential of being punished by more than 1 year in prison.”

Page 2: “State courts sentenced an estimated 1,132,290 persons for a felony in 2006, including 206,140 (or 18% of all felony convictions) for a violent felony (table 1.1). … In 2006 an estimated 69% of all persons convicted of a felony in state courts were sentenced to a period of confinement—41% to state prison and 28% to local jails (table 1.2). Jail sentences are usually a year or less in a county or city facility, while prison sentences are usually more than a year and are served in a state facility.”

Page 4: “Table 1.2. Types of Felony Sentences Imposed in State Courts, by Offense, 2006 … Percent of felons sentenced to Incarceration … Violent offenses [=] 77%”

e) Report: “Federal Justice Statistics, 2006 Statistical Tables.” Prepared by the Urban Institute under the supervision of Mark Motivans of the Bureau of Justice Statistics, United States Department of Justice, May 1, 2009. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 32 (of pdf): “Table 5.2 … Type and Length of Federal Sentences Imposed, by Offense, October 1, 2005 – September 30, 2006 … Incarceration [for] Violent offenses [=] 2,311”

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[246] Webpage: “Glossary.” U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. Revised July 25, 2016. <bjs.ojp.gov>

Aggravated Assault
 

An attack or attempted attack with a weapon, regardless of whether an injury occurred, and an attack without a weapon when serious injury results.

With injury—An attack without a weapon when serious injury results or an attack with a weapon involving any injury. Serious injury includes broken bones, lost teeth, internal injuries, loss of consciousness, and any unspecified injury requiring two or more days of hospitalization. …

Murder
 

(1) Intentionally causing the death of another person without extreme provocation or legal justification or (2) causing the death of another while committing or attempting to commit another crime.

Rape

Forced sexual intercourse including both psychological coercion as well as physical force. Forced sexual intercourse means vaginal, anal or oral penetration by the offender(s). This category also includes incidents where the penetration is from a foreign object such as a bottle. Includes attempted rapes, male as well as female victims, and both heterosexual and same sex rape. Attempted rape includes verbal threats of rape.

Robbery

Completed or attempted theft, directly from a person, of property or cash by force or threat of force, with or without a weapon, and with or without injury. …

Sexual Assault
 

A wide range of victimizations, separate from rape or attempted rape. These crimes include attacks or attempted attacks generally involving unwanted sexual contact between victim and offender. Sexual assaults may or may not involve force and include such things as grabbing or fondling. Sexual assault also includes verbal threats.

Simple Assault
 

Attack without a weapon resulting either in no injury, minor injury (for example, bruises, black eyes, cuts, scratches or swelling) or in undetermined injury requiring less than 2 days of hospitalization. Also includes attempted assault without a weapon.

With minor injury—An attack without a weapon resulting in such injuries as bruises, black eyes, cuts or in undetermined injury requiring less than 2 days of hospitalization.

Without injury—An attempted assault without a weapon not resulting in injury.

[247] The U.S. government publishes two primary crime measures: The FBI’s “Uniform Crime Report” (UCR) and the Department of Justice’s “National Crime Victimization Survey” (NCVS). The UCR is based upon incidents reported to law enforcement authorities and does not account for unreported crimes. The NCVS is based upon data gathered from extensive interviews, and hence, provides more accurate estimates of crime than the UCR.* The NCVS, however, does not provide data on: murders and nonnegligent manslaughters (because the victims cannot be interviewed), crimes committed against children under the age of 12, and commercial crimes such as robberies of banks and convenience stores.† Therefore, Just Facts uses the NCVS data as a baseline and extrapolates the missing information from UCR and NCVS data.

* Book: Firearms and Violence: A Critical Review. By the Committee to Improve Research and Data on Firearms and the Committee on Law and Justice, National Research Council of the National Academies. Edited by Charles F. Wellford, John V. Pepper, and Carol V. Petrie. National Academies Press, 2005.

Page 21: “The National Crime Victimization Survey … is widely viewed as a “gold standard for measuring crime victimization.”

Page 30: “Although the NCVS data do many things right, they are, like any such system, beset with methodological problems of surveys in general as well as particular problems associated with measuring illicit, deviant, and deleterious activities….”

† Report: “The Nation’s Two Crime Measures.” By Michael Planty and Lynn Langton. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, September, 2014. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 1:

The U.S. Department of Justice administers two statistical programs to measure the magnitude, nature, and impact of crime in the nation: the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program and the Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS). Each of these programs produces valuable information about aspects of the nation’s crime problem. Because the UCR and NCVS programs have different purposes, use different methods, and focus on somewhat different aspects of crime, the complementary information they produce together provides a more comprehensive understanding of the nation’s crime problem than either could produce alone. …

The UCR Program currently collects information on murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, arson, and human trafficking. …

The current NCVS collects detailed information on the frequency and nature of the crimes of rape and other sexual assault, robbery, aggravated and simple assault, personal larceny, household burglary, motor vehicle theft, and other theft. Each year, BJS interviews a nationally representative sample of approximately 169,000 persons age 12 or older living in U.S. households. Households remain in the sample for 3.5 years.

Page 2:

The NCVS includes, but the UCR excludes, sexual assault (completed, attempted, and threatened), attempted robberies, verbal threats of rape, simple assault, and crimes not reported to law enforcement. The UCR includes, but the NCVS excludes, homicide, arson, commercial crimes, and crimes against children under age 12. The UCR captures crimes reported to law enforcement, but collects only arrest data for simple assault and sex offenses other than forcible rape.

[248]  Report: “Time Served in State Prison, 2016.” By Danielle Kaeble. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, November 2018. <bjs.ojp.gov>

Pages 1–2:

These findings are based on prisoner records from the Bureau of Justice Statistics’ National Corrections Reporting Program (NCRP), which collects records on prison admissions and releases.

All statistics in this report are based on state prisoners’ first release after serving time for a given offense. They exclude persons who had been released after serving time for an offense, returned to prison for violating community supervision, and then were released again. …

Ninety-six percent of violent offenders released in 2016, including 70% of those sentenced for murder or non-negligent manslaughter, served less than 20 years before initial release from state prison. …

By offense type, the median time served was 13.4 years for murder, 2.2 years for violent crimes excluding murder….

Table 1: Time Served in State Prison Before First Release, by Most Serious Offense, 2016

Most Serious Offense

Time Served in Prisona

Medianb [Years]

Violent

2.4

Murderc

13.4

Note: … First release does not refer to first-time offenders but to offenders’ first release from a given sentence (whether they are first-time offenders or not), as opposed to a re-release after a subsequent parole violation. Statistics are based on 44 states, and data exclude state prisoners with sentences of one year or less; those with missing values for most serious offense or calculated time served; those released by transfer, appeal, or detainer; and those who escaped. Data include 2,755 deaths in 2016. …

a Excludes time served in jail.
b The statistical median represents the value at which 50% of the values are larger and 50% are smaller in a sequence of numbers.
c Includes non-negligent manslaughter. …

Source: Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Corrections Reporting Program, 2016.

[249] Calculated with data from the report: “Recidivism of Prisoners Released in 34 States in 2012: A 5-Year Follow-Up Period (2012–2017).” By Matthew R. Durose and Leonardo Antenangeli. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 2021.

<bjs.ojp.gov>

Page 1:

Among state prisoners released in 2012 across 34 states, 62% were arrested within 3 years, and 71% were arrested within 5 years (figure 1). Among prisoners released in 2012 across 21 states with available data on persons returned to prison, 39% had either a parole or probation violation or an arrest for a new offense within 3 years that led to imprisonment, and 46% had a parole or probation violation or an arrest within 5 years that led to imprisonment.

The Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) used prisoner records from the National Corrections Reporting Program and criminal history data to analyze the post-release offending patterns of former prisoners both within and outside of the state where they were imprisoned. This study randomly sampled about 92,100 released prisoners to represent the approximately 408,300 state prisoners released across 34 states in 2012. These 34 states were responsible for 79% of all persons released from state prisons that year nationwide. (See Methodology.)

Figure 1 Cumulative Percent of State Prisoners Released in 2012 Who Had a New Arrest, Conviction, or Return to Prison After Release, by Year Following Release

Page 10:

Table 10: Percent of State Prisoners Released in 34 States in 2012 Who Were Arrested Within 5 Years Following Release, by Type of Post-Release Arrest Offense Post-Release Arrest Offense … Percent … Homicide [=] 0.8 … Rape/sexual assault [=] 1.4 … Robbery [=] 4.8 … Assault [=] 21.6 …

The approximately 408,300 state prisoners released across 34 states in 2012 had an estimated 1,113,000 arrests during the 5-year follow-up period….” … “Recidivism patterns varied based on the specific types of offenses that prisoners were arrested for following release. During the 5-year follow-up period, 28% of all prisoners released in 2012 were arrested for a violent offense….

Page 25:

In this report, arrests for probation and parole violations were included as public order offenses. Excluding such arrests from the analysis would have a small impact on the recidivism rates. The percentage of state prisoners released across 34 states in 2012 who were arrested at least once within 5 years would be 69.0% if arrests for probation and parole violations were excluded and 70.8% if they were included. In other words, 97% of released prisoners who were arrested during the 5-year follow-up period were arrested for an offense other than a probation or parole violation.

CALCULATIONS:

  • 1,113,000 Total arrests / 408,300 prisoners = 2.7 per prisoner
  • 408,300 released prisoners × 0.8% homicide post-arrest charges = 3,266 new homicide arrests
  • 408,300 released prisoners × 1.4% rape/sexual assault post-arrest charges = 5,716 new rape arrests
  • 408,300 released prisoners × 4.8% robbery post-arrest charges = 19,598 new robbery arrests
  • 408,300 released prisoners × 21.6% assault post-arrest charges = 88,193 new assault arrests

[250] Calculated with data from the report: “Recidivism of Prisoners Released in 30 States in 2005: Patterns from 2005 to 2010.” By Matthew R. Durose, Alexia D. Cooper, and Howard N. Snyder. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, April 2014. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 1:

Overall, 67.8% of the 404,638 state prisoners released in 2005 in 30 states were arrested within 3 years of release, and 76.6% were arrested within 5 years of release…. Among prisoners released in 2005 in 23 states with available data on inmates returned to prison, 49.7% had either a parole or probation violation or an arrest for a new offense within 3 years that led to imprisonment, and 55.1% had a parole or probation violation or an arrest that led to imprisonment within 5 years.

Page 9:

Table 9: Recidivism of Prisoners Released in 30 States in 2005, By Type of Post-Release Arrest Charge … Percent of released prisoners arrested within 5 years of release … Any offense [=] 76.6% … Violent [=] 28.6% … Homicide [=] 0.9 … Rape/sexual assault [=] 1.7 … Robbery [=] 5.5 … Assault [=] 23.0 … Other [=] 4.0 …

Note: Prisoners were tracked for 5 years following release. … When information on the arrest charge was missing in the criminal history records, the court disposition data were used to describe the charge.

Page 17:

The study excluded releases that were transfers to the custody of another authority, releases due to death, releases on bond, releases to seek or participate in an appeal of a case, and escapes from prison or absent without official leave (AWOL). Inmates whose sentence was less than 1 year were also excluded. The first release during 2005 was selected for persons released multiple times during the year.

CALCULATIONS:

  • 404,638 released prisoners × .9% homicide post-arrest charges = 3,642 new homicide arrests
  • 404,638 released prisoners × 1.7% rape/sexual assault post-arrest charges = 6,879 new rape arrests
  • 404,638 released prisoners × 5.5% robbery post-arrest charges = 22,255 new robbery arrests
  • 404,638 released prisoners × 23% assault post-arrest charges = 93,067 new assault arrests

[251] Report: “2018 Update on Prisoner Recidivism: A 9-Year Follow-up Period (2005–2014).” By Mariel Alper, Matthew R. Durose, and Joshua Markman. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, May 2018.

<www.bjs.gov>

Page 1:

Five in 6 (83%) state prisoners released in 2005 across 30 states were arrested at least once during the 9 years following their release. During each year and cumulatively in the 9-year follow-up period, released property offenders were more likely to be arrested than released violent offenders. …

The Bureau of Justice Statistics analyzed the offending patterns of 67,966 prisoners who were randomly sampled to represent the 401,288 state prisoners released in 2005 in 30 states.”

Page 5: “Among all released prisoners arrested within 9 years, about 5 in 6 prisoners (82%) were arrested within the 3-year follow-up period (not shown).”

Page 7: “Prisoners released in 30 states in 2005 were arrested nearly 2 million times during the 9 years following release … estimated 1,994,000 arrests during the 9-year period, an average of 5 arrests per released prisoner (table 4).”

Page 14: “For example, of the 44% of released prisoners who were arrested during their first year after release, 1 in 9 (5% of all released prisoners) had no additional arrests during the 9-year follow-up period.”

Page 17: “In other words, 99% of prisoners who were arrested during the 9-year follow-up period were arrested for an offense other than a probation or parole violation.”

[252] Calculated with data from the report: “Recidivism of Prisoners Released in 34 States in 2012: A 5-Year Follow-Up Period (2012–2017).” By Matthew R. Durose and Leonardo Antenangeli. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 2021.

<bjs.ojp.gov>

Page 1:

Among state prisoners released in 2012 across 34 states, 62% were arrested within 3 years, and 71% were arrested within 5 years (figure 1). Among prisoners released in 2012 across 21 states with available data on persons returned to prison, 39% had either a parole or probation violation or an arrest for a new offense within 3 years that led to imprisonment, and 46% had a parole or probation violation or an arrest within 5 years that led to imprisonment.

The Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) used prisoner records from the National Corrections Reporting Program and criminal history data to analyze the post-release offending patterns of former prisoners both within and outside of the state where they were imprisoned. This study randomly sampled about 92,100 released prisoners to represent the approximately 408,300 state prisoners released across 34 states in 2012. These 34 states were responsible for 79% of all persons released from state prisons that year nationwide. (See Methodology.)

Figure 1 Cumulative Percent of State Prisoners Released in 2012 Who Had a New Arrest, Conviction, or Return to Prison After Release, by Year Following Release

Page 10:

Table 10: Percent of State Prisoners Released in 34 States in 2012 Who Were Arrested Within 5 Years Following Release, by Type of Post-Release Arrest Offense Post-Release Arrest Offense … Percent … Homicide [=] 0.8 … Rape/sexual assault [=] 1.4 … Robbery [=] 4.8 … Assault [=] 21.6 …

The approximately 408,300 state prisoners released across 34 states in 2012 had an estimated 1,113,000 arrests during the 5-year follow-up period….” … “Recidivism patterns varied based on the specific types of offenses that prisoners were arrested for following release. During the 5-year follow-up period, 28% of all prisoners released in 2012 were arrested for a violent offense….

Page 25:

In this report, arrests for probation and parole violations were included as public order offenses. Excluding such arrests from the analysis would have a small impact on the recidivism rates. The percentage of state prisoners released across 34 states in 2012 who were arrested at least once within 5 years would be 69.0% if arrests for probation and parole violations were excluded and 70.8% if they were included. In other words, 97% of released prisoners who were arrested during the 5-year follow-up period were arrested for an offense other than a probation or parole violation.

CALCULATIONS:

  • 1,113,000 Total arrests / 408,300 prisoners = 2.7 per prisoner
  • 408,300 released prisoners × 0.8% homicide post-arrest charges = 3,266 new homicide arrests
  • 408,300 released prisoners × 1.4% rape/sexual assault post-arrest charges = 5,716 new rape arrests
  • 408,300 released prisoners × 4.8% robbery post-arrest charges = 19,598 new robbery arrests
  • 408,300 released prisoners × 21.6% assault post-arrest charges = 88,193 new assault arrests

[253] Article: “New York Killers, and Those Killed, by Numbers.” By Jo Craven Mcginty. New York Times, April 28, 2006. <www.nytimes.com>

“From 2003 through 2005, 1,662 murders were committed in New York. … More than 90 percent of the killers had criminal records; and of those who wound up killed, more than half had them.”

[254] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[255] Calculated with data from the article: “2019 Closes with 348 Homicides in Baltimore, Second-Deadliest Year on Record.” By Tim Prudente. Baltimore Sun, January 1, 2020.

<www.baltimoresun.com>

Baltimore ended 2019 with 348 homicides on record, according to data compiled by The Baltimore Sun.

The year had already set a grim record of 57 killings per 100,000 people, the city’s worst homicide rate on record. …

The city’s total homicide count is second only to 1993, when the city suffered 353 killings and had nearly 125,000 more people. …

2019 Victim and Suspect Analysis Report

This report exhibits the victims and suspects of Homicides in 2019 and chronicles the groupings thereof. …

Suspects …

Average # of arrest per suspect: [=] 8.2 … Percent with prior records: [=] 81.4% … Percent on P&P [parole and probation] at time of incident: [=] 26.7% … Percent Arrested for Violent Crimes: [=] 52.3% …

Prepared by the Homicide Administrative Unit

[256] Article: “Deadliest Year in Baltimore History Ends with 344 Homicides.” By Kevin Rector. Baltimore Sun, January 1, 2016.

<www.baltimoresun.com>

“Blood was shed in Baltimore at an unprecedented pace in 2015, with mostly young, black men shot to death in a near-daily crush of violence. … On a per-capita basis, the year was the deadliest ever in the city. The year’s tally of 344 homicides was second only to the record 353 in 1993, when Baltimore had about 100,000 more residents.”

[257] Article: “Statistical Snapshots from Baltimore’s Deadliest Year: Suspects, Victims and Cops.” By Kevin Rector. Baltimore Sun, January 7, 2016. <www.baltimoresun.com>

While detectives have no motive or suspects in many of the year’s 344 homicides, the department’s annual homicide analysis report captures what the department does know about the people it arrested and those who were killed. … The department said it had 85 homicide suspects as of Dec. 31, when the data was compiled. … Among the suspects, 76.5 percent had prior criminal records, 62.4 percent had prior drug arrests, 52.9 percent had been arrested for violent crimes, and 41.2 percent had been arrested for gun crimes. Nearly a quarter were on parole and probation at the time of the killing for which they are now a suspect. Nearly 2.5 percent were on parole and probation specifically for a gun crime at the time of the incident. The average suspect had been arrested more than nine times before, and 15.3 percent of the suspects were suspected gang members, the report said.

[258] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[259] Article: “A History of D.C. Gun Ban.” Compiled by Meg Smith and Leah Carliner. Washington Post, June 26, 2008. <www.washingtonpost.com>

June 1976: [T]he D.C. Council votes 12 to 1 in favor of a bill restricting city residents from acquiring handguns. The law exempts guards, police officers and owners who had registered their handguns before it took effect. Under the bill, all firearms (including rifles and shotguns, which were not restricted by the law) must be kept unloaded and disassembled, except those in business establishments.

September 1976: Attempts in Congress to block the District law fail, clearing the way for it to go into effect.

[260] Brief submitted to the U.S. Supreme Court: District of Columbia v. Heller. By Thomas C. Goldstein and others (Attorneys for District of Columbia), January 4, 2008. <www.nraila.org>

Pages 1–2:

Relevant portions of the D.C. Code provide:

§ 7-2502.02. Registration of certain firearms prohibited.

(a) A registration certificate shall not be issued for a:

(1) Sawed-off shotgun;

(2) Machine gun;

(3) Short-barreled rifle; or

(4) Pistol not validly registered to the current registrant in the District prior to September 24, 1976, except that the provisions of this section shall not apply to any organization that employs at least 1 commissioned special police officer or other employee licensed to carry a firearm and that arms the employee with a firearm during the employee’s duty hours or to a police officer who has retired from the Metropolitan Police Department.

(b) Nothing in this section shall prevent a police officer who has retired from the Metropolitan Police Department from registering a pistol.

§ 7-2507.02. Firearms required to be unloaded and disassembled or locked.

Except for law enforcement personnel described in § 7-2502.01(b)(1), each registrant shall keep any firearm in his possession unloaded and disassembled or bound by a trigger lock or similar device unless such firearm is kept at his place of business, or while being used for lawful recreational purposes within the District of Columbia.

[261] Ruling: District of Columbia v. Heller. U.S. Supreme Court, June 26, 2008. Decided 5–4. Majority: Scalia, Roberts, Kennedy, Thomas, Alito. Dissenting: Stevens, Souter, Ginsburg, Breyer. <caselaw.findlaw.com>

The handgun ban and the trigger-lock requirement (as applied to self-defense) violate the Second Amendment. The District’s total ban on handgun possession in the home amounts to a prohibition on an entire class of “arms” that Americans overwhelmingly choose for the lawful purpose of self-defense. Under any of the standards of scrutiny the Court has applied to enumerated constitutional rights, this prohibition—in the place where the importance of the lawful defense of self, family, and property is most acute—would fail constitutional muster. Similarly, the requirement that any lawful firearm in the home be disassembled or bound by a trigger lock makes it impossible for citizens to use arms for the core lawful purpose of self-defense and is hence unconstitutional. Because Heller conceded at oral argument that the D.C. licensing law is permissible if it is not enforced arbitrarily and capriciously, the Court assumes that a license will satisfy his prayer for relief and does not address the licensing requirement. Assuming he is not disqualified from exercising Second Amendment rights, the District must permit Heller to register his handgun and must issue him a license to carry it in the home.

[262] Calculated with data from:

a) Dataset: “Estimated Offenses, District of Columbia, 1960–2008.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Uniform Crime Reporting Program. Sent from the FBI to Just Facts on June 15, 2010.

b) Dataset: “Estimated Offenses, United States, 1960–2008.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Uniform Crime Reporting Program. Sent from the FBI to Just Facts on June 15, 2010.

c) Report: “Crime in the United States 2009–2019.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division. <ucr.fbi.gov>

2009–2015, 2017–2019 — “Table 5: Crime in the United States, by State.”

2016 — “Table 3: Crime in the United States, by State.”

d) Dataset: “Table 1: Crime in the United States by Volume and Rate per 100,000 Inhabitants, 1999–2018.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Uniform Crime Reporting Program. <ucr.fbi.gov>

e) Dataset: “Table 1: Crime in the United States by Volume and Rate per 100,000 Inhabitants, 2000–2019.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Uniform Crime Reporting Program. <ucr.fbi.gov>

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data is available upon request.

[263] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[264] Report: “2019 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, September 2020. <ucr.fbi.gov>

“Table 1 Data Declaration.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

Because not all law enforcement agencies provide data for complete reporting periods, the FBI includes estimated crime numbers in these presentations. The FBI computes estimates for participating agencies that do not provide 12 months of complete data. For agencies supplying 3 to 11 months of data, the national UCR [Unified Crime Reporting] Program estimates for the missing data by following a standard estimation procedure using the data provided by the agency. If an agency has supplied less than 3 months of data, the FBI computes estimates by using the known crime figures of similar areas within a state and assigning the same proportion of crime volumes to nonreporting agencies. The estimation process considers the following: population size covered by the agency; type of jurisdiction, [such as] police department versus sheriff’s office; and geographic location.

[265] “Firearms Act, 1920.” Office of Public Sector Information.

<www.opsi.gov.uk>

Page 3–4:

Chapter 43, Section 1:

(1) A person shall not purchase, have in his possession, use, or carry any firearm or ammunition unless he holds a certificate (in this Act called a firearm certificate) granted under this section, and in force at the time.

(2) A firearm certificate shall be granted by the chief officer of police of the district in which the applicant for the certificate resides, if he is satisfied that the applicant is a person who has a good reason for requiring such a certificate and can be permitted to have in his possession, use, and carry a firearm or ammunition without danger to the public safety or to the peace, and on payment of the prescribed fee….

(3) A firearm certificate shall be in the prescribed form and shall specify the nature and number of the firearms to which it relates, and, as respects ammunition, the quantities authorised to be purchased and to be held at any one time thereunder, and the certificate may on the application of the holder thereof be varied from time to time by the chief officer of police of the district in which the holder for the time resides. …

(5) A firearm certificate shall, unless previously revoked or cancelled, continue in force for three years, but shall be renewable for a further period of three years by the chief officer of police of the district in which the holder of the certificate resides….

(7) The fee to be paid on the grant or renewal of a firearm certificate shall be such as is specified in the First Schedule to this Act.

(8) If any person purchases, has in his possession, uses, or carries a firearm or ammunition without holding a firearm certificate or otherwise than as authorised by such a certificate or, in the case of ammunition, in quantities in excess of those so authorised, or fails to comply with any condition subject to which the certificate is granted, he shall be liable in respect of each offence on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding fifty pounds, or to imprisonment, with or without hard labour, for a term not exceeding three months, or to both such imprisonment and fine….

Page 12:

Chapter 43, Section 12:

(1) In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires—The expression “firearm” means any lethal firearm or other weapon of any description from which any shot, bullet, or other missile can be discharged, or any part thereof, and the expression “ammunition” means ammunition for any such firearms, and includes grenades, bombs, and other similar missiles, whether such missiles are capable of use with a firearm or not, and ingredients and components thereof:

Provided that a smooth bore shot-gun or air-gun or air-rifle (other than air-guns and air-rifles of a type declared by rules made by a Secretary of State under this Act to be specially dangerous) and ammunition therefor shall not in Great Britain be deemed to be a firearm and ammunition for the purpose of the provisions of this Act other than those relating to the removal of firearms and ammunition from one place to another or for export….

[266] “Firearms Act, 1968.” Office of Public Sector Information. <www.opsi.gov.uk>

Part I: Provisions as to Possession, Handling and Distribution of Weapons and Ammunition; Prevention of Crime and Measures to Protect Public Safety

General restrictions on possession and handling of firearms and ammunition

Section 1: Requirement of firearm certificate.

(1) Subject to any exemption under this Act, it is an offence for a person—

(a) to have in his possession, or to purchase or acquire, a firearm to which this section applies without holding a firearm certificate in force at the time, or otherwise than as authorised by such a certificate;

(b) to have in his possession, or to purchase or acquire, any ammunition to which this section applies without holding a firearm certificate in force at the time, or otherwise than as authorised by such a certificate, or in quantities in excess of those so authorised.

(2) It is an offence for a person to fail to comply with a condition subject to which a firearm certificate is held by him. …

Section 2: Requirement of certificate for possession of shot guns.

(1) Subject to any exemption under this Act, it is an offence for a person to have in his possession, or to purchase or acquire, a shot gun without holding a certificate under this Act authorising him to possess shot guns.

(2) It is an offence for a person to fail to comply with a condition subject to which a shot gun certificate is held by him. …

Part II: Firearm and Shot Gun Certificates; Registration of Firearms Dealers

Grant, renewal, variation and revocation of firearm and shot gun certificates

Section 26A: Applications for firearm certificates.

(1) An application for the grant of a firearm certificate shall be made in the prescribed form to the chief officer of police for the area in which the applicant resides and shall state such particulars as may be required by the form. …

Section 26B: Applications for shot gun certificates.

(1) An application for the grant of a shot gun certificate shall be made in the prescribed form to the chief officer of police for the area in which the applicant resides and shall state such particulars as may be required by the form.

Section 27: Special provisions about firearm certificates. ….

(2) A firearm certificate shall be in the prescribed form and shall specify the conditions (if any) subject to which it is held, the nature and number of the firearms to which it relates [including if known their identification numbers,F3] and, as respects ammunition, the quantities authorised to be purchased [or acquiredF3] and to be held at any one time thereunder. …

Section 28: Special provisions about shot gun certificates. …

(2A) A shot gun certificate shall specify the description of the shot guns to which it relates including, if known, the identification numbers of the guns.F3

F3 Words inserted by Firearms (Amendment) Act 1988 (c. 45, SIF 51:1), s. 23(5)

[267] Report: “Home Office: Handgun Surrender and Compensation.” House of Commons, Committee of Public Accounts, June 21, 1999. <publications.parliament.uk>

6. Over 162,000 handguns and 700 tonnes† of ammunition were compulsorily surrendered to local police stations between July 1997 and February 1998. The surrender was the main measure in response to the tragic events of 13 March 1996, when Thomas Hamilton walked into Dunblane Primary School armed with four handguns and 743 rounds of ammunition and shot dead 16 children and their teacher, and wounded 10 other children and three other teachers. Under the first Firearms (Amendment) Act of 1997 large-calibre handguns became prohibited from 1 July 1997, with owners having until 30 September 1997 to dispose of them lawfully, and small-calibre handguns became prohibited from 1 February 1998, with disposal by 28 February 1998.3

7. As a first step in managing the surrender and compensation schemes, the Home Office and the police needed to contact handgun owners and dealers to ensure that they were aware of the terms of the prohibition and surrender. The Home Office provided booklets for the police to distribute to handgun owners and dealers, explaining the requirements of the legislation and the terms of the compensation. …

13. The Home Office could not provide absolute assurance that no handguns had been unlawfully retained, but was reasonably satisfied that individual police forces had ensured that prohibited handguns in their area had either been surrendered or otherwise lawfully disposed of. The Home Office assured us that individual forces had accurate records of firearms held on firearms certificates. They had used these to follow up firearms which were to be surrendered under the terms of the Acts, and had made adequate checks on handguns claimed to have been otherwise lawfully disposed of, for example by owners sending them abroad. Sixteen of the 26 police forces the National Audit Office visited considered that they had satisfied themselves that all relevant handguns had been traced and those prohibited surrendered. The remaining ten had been unable to account for the handguns held by a total of 35 owners by the end of the surrender period, although by September 1998 over three-quarters of these cases had been resolved.10

15. The intention of the prohibition under the 1997 firearms legislation was to remove handguns from civilian ownership, and thereby also from the risk of being used in crime.

NOTE: † 700 metric tons equal 1.5 million pounds.

CALCULATION: 35 unaccounted for handguns – (3/4 × 35 handguns recovered by September 1998) = 8.75 remaining guns

[268] Report: “Homicide in England and Wales, Year Ending March 2021.” Office for National Statistics (UK), February 2022. <www.ons.gov.uk>

Page 25: “Homicide Index data are based on the year when the offence was recorded as a crime, not when the offence took place or when the case was heard in court. While in the majority of cases the offence will be recorded in the same year as it took place, this is not always so. Caution is therefore needed when looking at longer-term homicide trends.”

“Appendix Table 1: Offences Initially Recorded as Homicide by Current Classification, Year Ending December 1960 to Year Ending March 2021.” <www.ons.gov.uk>

NOTE: Years are calendar years prior to 1998 and fiscal years thereafter (April 1 to March 31).

[269] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[270] Ruling: Hunt v. Daley. Appellate Court of Illinois, First District, Third Division, February 19, 1997. Decided 3–0. <caselaw.findlaw.com>


This proceeding involves the 1982 Chicago Weapons Ordinance, passed by the Chicago City Council on March 19, 1982 … rendering certain firearms unregisterable in the City of Chicago. Under that ordinance, several categories of firearms, including handguns, became unregisterable in the City of Chicago. … However, pursuant to a grandfathering provision provided in the 1982 ordinance, handgun owners whose handguns were validly registered prior to the effective date of the handgun ban could continue to re-register their handguns. … The 1982 ordinance also required that such re-registration take place every two years. … [It was] … amended and recodified in 1994 to require annual re-registration…. The failure to re-register firearms every two years after the enactment of the 1982 ordinance rendered such firearms permanently unregisterable, and thereby caused handgun owners to forfeit their right to possess such firearms within the City of Chicago.

Justice GORDON delivered the opinion of the court:

COUSINS, P.J., and HOURIHANE, J., concur.

[271] Ruling: Sklar v. Byrne. U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, February 8, 1984 (as amended April 17, 1984). Decided 3–0. <openjurist.org>

Before PELL and CUDAHY, Circuit Judges, and WILKINS, Senior District Judge.*

CUDAHY, Circuit Judge.

On March 19, 1982, the Chicago City Council passed an ordinance amending Chapter 11.1 of the Municipal Code of the City of Chicago which regulates the sale, possession and registration of firearms and ammunition. The ordinance requires that all firearms in Chicago be registered with the city. … The ordinance also classifies some firearms as “unregisterable,” thus making illegal their possession in the City of Chicago.2 Among the categories of “unregisterable” firearms are “Handguns, except those validly registered to a current owner in the City of Chicago prior to the effective date of this Chapter.”… The effective date of the Chapter was April 10, 1982.

[272] Complaint: McDonald v. Chicago. U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, June 26, 2008. <storage.courtlistener.com>

Page 7: “Chicago Municipal Code § 8-20-200 provides: (a) Every registrant must renew his registration certificate annually. Applications for renewal shall be made by such registrants 60 days prior to the expiration of the current registration certificate. (b) The application for renewal shall include the payment of a renewal fee as follows: 1 firearm … $20.00”

[273] Article: “Evanston Latest Suburb to Repeal Handgun Ban in Wake of High Court Ruling.” By Deborah Horan. Chicago Tribune, August 12, 2008. <www.chicagotribune.com>

“Following the lead of at least two other Chicago suburbs [presumably Morton Grove and Wilmette], the City of Evanston has repealed its handgun ban in the wake of the June U.S. Supreme Court decision that ruled blanket prohibitions of handguns in the home for self-defense violated 2nd Amendment rights.”

NOTE: According to the 2000 U.S. Census (<www2.census.gov>), the City of Evanston had a population of 74,239. Accessed January 10, 2022.

[274] Article: “Morton Grove Repeals 27-Year-Old Gun Ban.” By Robert Channick. Chicago Tribune, July 28, 2008. <www.chicagotribune.com>


Morton Grove’s landmark handgun ban, imposed 27 years ago, died quietly Monday night, as the suburb’s Village Board bowed to a new legal reality and repealed the ordinance. The board’s 5–1 vote came in response to last month’s ruling by a divided U.S. Supreme Court that struck down a similar ban. The high court ruled that the 2nd Amendment protects a person’s right to own a firearm for self-defense.

NOTE: According to the 2000 U.S. Census (<www2.census.gov>), the Village of Morton Grove had a population of 22,451. Accessed January 10, 2022.

[275] Article: “Wilmette Repeals Town’s Handgun Ban after High Court Ruling.” By Susan Kuczka and Hal Dardick. Chicago Tribune, July 25, 2008. <www.chicagotribune.com>

“Wilmette may be the first, but it’s unlikely to be the last Chicago suburb to repeal its handgun ban in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark decision last month to declare a similar measure unconstitutional. … In Wilmette, the village’s seven trustees voted unanimously Tuesday night to repeal the ban.”

NOTE: According to the 2000 U.S. Census (<www2.census.gov>), the Village of Wilmette had a population of 27,651. Accessed January 10, 2022.

[276] Article: “Winnetka Repeals Handgun Ban.” ABC Eyewitness News, November 19, 2008. <abc7chicago.com>

The Winnetka Village Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to end its ban on gun possession.

The action comes after a Supreme Court decision that calls handgun bans a violation of the 2nd Amendment.

The Winnetka council will still regulate firearm use.

The ban was established after Laurie Dann shot and killed a child and wounded five others at the Hubbard Woods Elementary School in 1988.

NOTE: According to the 2000 U.S. Census (<www2.census.gov>), the Village of Winnetka had a population of 12,419. Accessed January 10, 2022.

[277] Article: “City Wins 1st Round in Handgun Ban Challenge.” By Carlos Sadovi and Hal Dardick. Chicago Tribune, December 18, 2008. <www.chicagotribune.com>


“On Thursday, U.S. District Judge Milton Shadur rejected the gun rights group’s effort to extend the D.C. ruling to Chicago and Oak Park.”


NOTES:

  • See <www.nraila.org> for the original complaint filed against Oak Park by the NRA [National Rifle Association].
  • According to the 2000 U.S. Census (<www2.census.gov>), the Village of Oak Park had a population of 52,524. Accessed January 10, 2022.

[278] Ruling: McDonald v. Chicago. U.S. Supreme Court, June 28, 2010. Decided 5–4. Majority: Alito, Roberts, Scalia, Kennedy, Thomas. Dissenting: Stevens, Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor. <www.law.cornell.edu>

Two years ago, in District of Columbia v. Heller … we held that the Second Amendment† protects the right to keep and bear arms for the purpose of self-defense, and we struck down a District of Columbia law that banned the possession of handguns in the home. The city of Chicago (City) and the village of Oak Park, a Chicago suburb, have laws that are similar to the District of Columbia’s, but Chicago and Oak Park argue that their laws are constitutional because the Second Amendment has no application to the States. … Applying the standard that is well established in our case law, we hold that the Second Amendment right is fully applicable to the States.

NOTE: † Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. Ratified December 15, 1791. <www.justfacts.com>

“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.”

[279] Ruling: Ezell v City of Chicago. U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, July 6, 2011. Decided 3–0. Majority: Kanne and Sykes. Concurring: Rovner. <caselaw.findlaw.com>

For nearly three decades, the City of Chicago had several ordinances in place “effectively banning handgun possession by almost all private citizens.” McDonald v. City of Chicago…. In 2008 the Supreme Court struck down a similar District of Columbia law on an original meaning interpretation of the Second Amendment.1 District of Columbia v. Heller….

Heller held that the Amendment secures an individual right to keep and bear arms, the core component of which is the right to possess operable firearms—handguns included—for self-defense, most notably in the home.

Soon after the Court’s decision in Heller, Chicago’s handgun ban was challenged. … The foundational question in that litigation was whether the Second Amendment applies to the States and subsidiary local governments. … The Supreme Court gave an affirmative answer: The Second Amendment applies to the States through the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. … In the wake of McDonald, the Chicago City Council lifted the City’s laws banning handgun possession and adopted the Responsible Gun Owners Ordinance in their place.

The plaintiffs here challenge the City Council’s treatment of firing ranges. The Ordinance mandates one hour of range training as a prerequisite to lawful gun ownership … yet at the same time prohibits all firing ranges in the city…. …

The plaintiffs have established their entitlement to a preliminary injunction based on their Second Amendment claim.… For the foregoing reasons, we REVERSE the district court’s order denying the plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction and REMAND with instructions to enter a preliminary injunction consistent with this opinion.

[280] Ruling: Ezell v City of Chicago. U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division, September 29, 2014. <cases.justia.com>

Pages 2–3:

Rhonda Ezell, Joseph Brown, and William Hespen are Chicago residents who want access to a firing range within the city. … After the Seventh Circuit concluded that the Plaintiffs had a strong likelihood of success on their claim that a blanket ban on firing ranges within the City was unconstitutional, see Ezell v. City of Chicago, 651 F.3d 684 (7th Cir. 2011), the City enacted a comprehensive regulatory scheme encompassing licensing provisions, construction requirements, environmental regulations, and zoning restrictions for firing ranges on July 6, 2011. … While short of a complete ban on ranges, the Plaintiffs challenge the constitutionality of a number of the City’s regulations.

Page 32: “For the foregoing reasons, the Plaintiff’s Motion for Summary Judgment is granted in part and denied in part. Similarly, the City’s Motion for Summary Judgment is granted in part and denied in part.”

NOTE: The plaintiffs challenged several regulations that pertained to firing range zoning restrictions, construction requirements, and business operations. As indicated above, some challenges were resolved in favor of the plaintiffs and some in favor of the City of Chicago.

[281] Article: “Chicago to Get Its First Gun Store.” By Stephen Gutowski. Washington Free Beacon, January 25, 2016. <freebeacon.com>

Despite a number of recent court cases invalidating the city’s strict gun control laws, Chicago still has no gun store or range within the city limits. One man has a plan to change that. …

Christopher O’Connor has developed a plan to build both a gun store and range in the city’s River West section. …

O’Connor said his goal was to give residents a place to exercise their gun rights. “Right now, there’s nowhere to do this in the city,” he said. “There’s a definite need for this. The people of Chicago have a right to exercise their Second Amendment rights.” …

The plan calls for O’Connor to spend $2 million renovating the property he plans to use and sets the end of 2016 as its goal for the shop’s opening.

NOTE: As of January 17, 2022, Just Facts could not find any evidence that a firing range has opened in Chicago.

[282] Ruling: Moore v. Madigan. U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, December 11, 2012. Majority: Flaum and Posner. Dissenting: Williams. <storage.courtlistener.com>

Pages 1–2:

An Illinois law forbids a person, with exceptions mainly for police and other security personnel, hunters, and members of target shooting clubs … to carry a gun ready to use (loaded, immediately accessible—that is, easy to reach—and uncased). There are exceptions for a person on his own property (owned or rented), or in his home (but if it’s an apartment, only there and not in the apartment building’s common areas), or in his fixed place of business, or on the property of someone who has permitted him to be there with a ready-to-use gun.

Pages 20–21:

The Supreme Court has decided that the amendment confers a right to bear arms for self-defense, which is as important outside the home as inside. The theoretical and empirical evidence (which overall is inconclusive) is consistent with concluding that a right to carry firearms in public may promote self-defense. Illinois had to provide us with more than merely a rational basis for believing that its uniquely sweeping ban is justified by an increase in public safety. It has failed to meet this burden. The Supreme Court’s interpretation of the Second Amendment therefore compels us to reverse the decisions in the two cases before us and remand them to their respective district courts for the entry of declarations of unconstitutionality and permanent injunctions. Nevertheless we order our mandate stayed for 180 days to allow the Illinois legislature to craft a new gun law that will impose reasonable limitations, consistent with the public safety and the Second Amendment as interpreted in this opinion, on the carrying of guns in public.

[283] Article: “General Assembly Overrides Governor’s Veto of Concealed Carry Bill.” By Ray Long, Monique Garcia, and Rick Pearson. Chicago Tribune, July 9, 2013. <www.chicagotribune.com>

Lawmakers made Illinois the last state to allow concealed carry of firearms in two quick votes Tuesday.… The House and Senate voted to override [Governor] Quinn’s amendatory veto of a legislative compromise aimed at satisfying a federal court deadline for legalizing some form of public possession of firearms. Illinois was the last state without some form of legal concealed carry, but the appeals court ruled late last year that the ban was unconstitutional.

[284] Calculated with data from the report: “Concealed Carry Statistics.” Illinois State Police, Firearms Services Bureau, January 16, 2015. <www.isp.state.il.us>

Page 1: “Applications Active by County, January 1, 2014–December 31, 2014 … Cook [County =] 23,921”

Page 3: “Applications Active by County, January 1, 2014–December 31, 2014 … Total [=] 91,651”

CALCULATION: 23,921 Cook County permits / 91,651 total permits = 26%

[285] Calculated with data from:

a) Dataset: “Estimated Offenses, United States, 1960–2008.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Uniform Crime Reporting Program. Sent from the FBI to Just Facts on June 15, 2010.

b) Report: “2019 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Fall 2020. <ucr.fbi.gov>

“Table 1: Crime in the United States by Volume and Rate Per 100,000 Inhabitants, 1999–2019.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

c) “Return A Record Cards, Chicago, Illinois, 1960–1999.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Uniform Crime Reporting Program. Sent from the FBI to Just Facts on June 17, 2010.

d) Report: “Crime in the United States 2009–2019.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division. <ucr.fbi.gov>

2009–2015, 2017–2019: “Table 8: Illinois Offenses Known to Law Enforcement.”

2016: “Table 6: Illinois Offenses Known to Law Enforcement.”

e) Report: “Statistical Abstract of the United States: 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1985, 1987, 1989, 1990, 2012.” <www.census.gov>

f) Dataset: “Population Estimates for States, Counties, Places and Minor Civil Divisions: Annual Time Series, April 1, 1990 Census to July 1, 2000 Estimate.” Accessed January 10, 2022 at <www2.census.gov>

g) Dataset: “Intercensal Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places and Minor Civil Divisions: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2010.” Accessed January 20, 2022 at <www2.census.gov>

h) Dataset: “Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places in Illinois: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2019.” Accessed January 20, 2022 at <www2.census.gov>

NOTES:

  • To obtain the murder rates for Chicago in all years since 1965, Just Facts had to gather data from three different sources. Notwithstanding some minor differences in the overlapping years, the data were largely congruent, and Just Facts averaged them to estimate the murder rates.
  • An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[286] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[287] Report: “2019 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, September 2020. <ucr.fbi.gov>

“Table 1 Data Declaration.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

Because not all law enforcement agencies provide data for complete reporting periods, the FBI includes estimated crime numbers in these presentations. The FBI computes estimates for participating agencies that do not provide 12 months of complete data. For agencies supplying 3 to 11 months of data, the national UCR [Unified Crime Reporting] Program estimates for the missing data by following a standard estimation procedure using the data provided by the agency. If an agency has supplied less than 3 months of data, the FBI computes estimates by using the known crime figures of similar areas within a state and assigning the same proportion of crime volumes to nonreporting agencies. The estimation process considers the following: population size covered by the agency; type of jurisdiction, [such as] police department versus sheriff’s office; and geographic location.

[288] Calculated with data from the footnotes above and:

a) Report: “2009 Chicago Murder Analysis.” Chicago Police Department. <portal.chicagopolice.org>

Page 23: “Table 12: Weapons Used to Commit Murders, 2009”

b) Report: “2010 Chicago Murder Analysis.” Chicago Police Department. <portal.chicagopolice.org>

Page 23: “Table 12: Weapons Used to Commit Murders, 2010”

b) Report: “2011 Chicago Murder Analysis.” Chicago Police Department, January 6, 2012. <home.chicagopolice.org>

Page 23: “Table 12: Weapons Used to Commit Murders, 2011”

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[289] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[290] Webpage: “Identify Prohibited Persons.” Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms. Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.atf.gov>

The Gun Control Act (GCA), codified at 18 U.S.C. § 922(g), makes it unlawful for certain categories of persons to ship, transport, receive, or possess firearms or ammunition, to include any person:

  • convicted in any court of a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year;
  • who is a fugitive from justice;
  • who is an unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance (as defined in section 102 of the Controlled Substances Act, codified at 21 U.S.C. § 802);
  • who has been adjudicated as a mental defective or has been committed to any mental institution;
  • who is an illegal alien;
  • who has been discharged from the Armed Forces under dishonorable conditions;
  • who has renounced his or her United States citizenship;
  • who is subject to a court order restraining the person from harassing, stalking, or threatening an intimate partner or child of the intimate partner; or
  • who has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence.

The GCA at 18 U.S.C. § 992(n) also makes it unlawful for any person under indictment for a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year to ship, transport, or receive firearms or ammunition.

Further, the GCA at 18 U.S.C. § 922(d) makes it unlawful to sell or otherwise dispose of firearms or ammunition to any person who is prohibited from shipping, transporting, receiving, or possessing firearms or ammunition.

[291] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 922: “Firearms, Unlawful Acts.” Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(g) It shall be unlawful for any person—

(1) who has been convicted in any court of, a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year;†

(2) who is a fugitive from justice;

(3) who is an unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance….

(4) who has been adjudicated as a mental defective or who has been committed to a mental institution;

(5) who, being an alien—

(A) is illegally or unlawfully in the United States…

(6) who has been discharged from the Armed Forces under dishonorable conditions;

(7) who, having been a citizen of the United States, has renounced his citizenship;

(8) who is subject to a court order that— …

(B) restrains such person from harassing, stalking, or threatening an intimate partner of such person or child of such intimate partner or person, or engaging in other conduct that would place an intimate partner in reasonable fear of bodily injury to the partner or child….

(9) who has been convicted in any court of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence, to ship or transport in interstate or foreign commerce, or possess in or affecting commerce, any firearm or ammunition; or to receive any firearm or ammunition which has been shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce.

NOTE: † In this law, the words, “crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year,” do not mean what they plainly state. See the next footnote for a full clarification. The implications of this are addressed a little later in this research.

[292] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 921: “Definitions.” Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(a) (20) The term “crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year” does not include—

(A) any Federal or State offenses pertaining to antitrust violations, unfair trade practices, restraints of trade, or other similar offenses relating to the regulation of business practices, or

(B) any State offense classified by the laws of the State as a misdemeanor and punishable by a term of imprisonment of two years or less.

What constitutes a conviction of such a crime shall be determined in accordance with the law of the jurisdiction in which the proceedings were held. Any conviction which has been expunged, or set aside or for which a person has been pardoned or has had civil rights restored shall not be considered a conviction for purposes of this chapter, unless such pardon, expungement, or restoration of civil rights expressly provides that the person may not ship, transport, possess, or receive firearms.

[293] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 924: “Firearms, Penalties.” Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

“(a)(2) Whoever knowingly violates subsection (a)(6), (d), (g), (h), (i), (j), or (o) of section 922 shall be fined as provided in this title, imprisoned not more than 10 years, or both.”

[294] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 922: “Firearms, Unlawful Acts.” Current as of February 1, 2010. Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(d) It shall be unlawful for any person to sell or otherwise dispose of any firearm or ammunition to any person knowing or having reasonable cause to believe that such person—

(1) is under indictment for, or has been convicted in any court of, a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year;

(2) is a fugitive from justice;

(3) is an unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance….

(4) has been adjudicated as a mental defective or has been committed to any mental institution;

(5) who, being an alien—

(A) is illegally or unlawfully in the United States …

(6) who2 … has been discharged from the Armed Forces under dishonorable conditions;

(7) who, having been a citizen of the United States, has renounced his citizenship;

(8) is subject to a court order that restrains such person from harassing, stalking, or threatening an intimate partner of such person or child of such intimate partner or person, or engaging in other conduct that would place an intimate partner in reasonable fear of bodily injury to the partner or child …

(9) has been convicted in any court of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence.

[295] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 924: “Firearms, Penalties.” Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

“(a)(2) Whoever knowingly violates subsection (a)(6), (d), (g), (h), (i), (j), or (o) of section 922 shall be fined as provided in this title, imprisoned not more than 10 years, or both.”

[296] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 922: “Firearms, Unlawful Acts.” Current as of February 1, 2010. Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(a) It shall be unlawful—

(1) for any person—

(A) except a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, or licensed dealer, to engage in the business of importing, manufacturing, or dealing in firearms, or in the course of such business to ship, transport, or receive any firearm in interstate or foreign commerce

[297] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 921: “Definitions.” Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(a) As used in this chapter …

(21) The term “engaged in the business” means—

(A) as applied to a manufacturer of firearms, a person who devotes time, attention, and labor to manufacturing firearms as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit through the sale or distribution of the firearms manufactured;

(B) as applied to a manufacturer of ammunition, a person who devotes time, attention, and labor to manufacturing ammunition as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit through the sale or distribution of the ammunition manufactured;

(C) as applied to a dealer in firearms, as defined in section 921(a)(11)(A), a person who devotes time, attention, and labor to dealing in firearms as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit through the repetitive purchase and resale of firearms, but such term shall not include a person who makes occasional sales, exchanges, or purchases of firearms for the enhancement of a personal collection or for a hobby, or who sells all or part of his personal collection of firearms;

(D) as applied to a dealer in firearms, as defined in section 921(a)(11)(B), a person who devotes time, attention, and labor to engaging in such activity as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit, but such term shall not include a person who makes occasional repairs of firearms, or who occasionally fits special barrels, stocks, or trigger mechanisms to firearms;

(E) as applied to an importer of firearms, a person who devotes time, attention, and labor to importing firearms as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit through the sale or distribution of the firearms imported; and

(F) as applied to an importer of ammunition, a person who devotes time, attention, and labor to importing ammunition as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit through the sale or distribution of the ammunition imported.

(22) The term “with the principal objective of livelihood and profit” means that the intent underlying the sale or disposition of firearms is predominantly one of obtaining livelihood and pecuniary gain, as opposed to other intents, such as improving or liquidating a personal firearms collection: Provided, That proof of profit shall not be required as to a person who engages in the regular and repetitive purchase and disposition of firearms for criminal purposes or terrorism.

[298] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 924: “Firearms, Penalties.” Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

“(n) A person who, with the intent to engage in conduct that constitutes a violation of section 922(a)(1)(A), travels from any State or foreign country into any other State and acquires, or attempts to acquire, a firearm in such other State in furtherance of such purpose shall be imprisoned for not more than 10 years.”

[299] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 922: “Firearms, Unlawful Acts.” Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(t)(1) Beginning on the date that is 30 days after the Attorney General notifies licensees under section 103(d) of the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act that the national instant criminal background check system is established [November 30, 1998†], a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, or licensed dealer shall not transfer a firearm to any other person who is not licensed under this chapter, unless—

(A) before the completion of the transfer, the licensee contacts the national instant criminal background check system established under section 103 of that Act

NOTE: † Report: “Review of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Enforcement of Brady Act Violations Identified Through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.” U.S. Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General, July 2004. <www.justice.gov>

The Brady Act of 1993 created a 3-day waiting period before a purchaser can take possession of a firearm, and it established a background check system—the NICS [National Instant Criminal Background Check System]—that firearms dealers were required to contact before the transfer of any firearm to ensure that a person receiving a firearm was not prohibited under the GCA [1968 Gun Control Act] from possessing firearms. The FBI implemented the NICS on November 30, 1998.

[300] Webpage: “National Instant Criminal Background Check System Fact Sheet.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division. Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www2.fbi.gov>

Mandated by the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act (Brady Act) of 1993 … the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) was established for Federal Firearms Licensees (FFLs) to contact by telephone, or other electronic means, for information to be supplied immediately on whether the transfer of a firearm would be in violation of Section 922 (g) or (n) of Title 18, United States Code, or state law. …

The NICS is a national system that checks available records on persons who may be disqualified from receiving firearms. The FBI developed the system through a cooperative effort with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and local and state law enforcement agencies. The NICS is a computerized background check system designed to respond within 30 seconds on most background check inquiries so the FFLs receive an almost immediate response. Depending on the willingness of state governments to act as a liaison for the NICS, the FFLs contact either the FBI or a designated state Point of Contact (POC) to initiate background checks on individuals purchasing or redeeming firearms. The background check process, as performed by the FBI and by state POCs, is described below.

[301] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 922: “Firearms, Unlawful Acts.” Current as of February 1, 2010. Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(a) It shall be unlawful…

(3) for any person, other than a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector to transport into or receive in the State where he resides … any firearm purchased or otherwise obtained by such person outside that State, except that this paragraph

(A) shall not preclude any person who lawfully acquires a firearm by bequest or intestate succession in a State other than his State of residence from transporting the firearm into or receiving it in that State, if it is lawful for such person to purchase or possess such firearm in that State…

(5) for any person (other than a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector) to transfer, sell, trade, give, transport, or deliver any firearm to any person (other than a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector) who the transferor knows or has reasonable cause to believe does not reside in … the State in which the transferor resides; except that this paragraph shall not apply to

(A) the transfer, transportation, or delivery of a firearm made to carry out a bequest of a firearm to, or an acquisition by intestate succession of a firearm by, a person who is permitted to acquire or possess a firearm under the laws of the State of his residence….

[302] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 922: “Firearms, Unlawful Acts.” Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(d) It shall be unlawful for any person to sell or otherwise dispose of any firearm or ammunition to any person knowing or having reasonable cause to believe that such person—

(1) is under indictment for, or has been convicted in any court of, a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year;

(2) is a fugitive from justice;

(3) is an unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance…

(4) has been adjudicated as a mental defective or has been committed to any mental institution;

(5) who, being an alien—

(A) is illegally or unlawfully in the United States …

(6) who2 … has been discharged from the Armed Forces under dishonorable conditions;

(7) who, having been a citizen of the United States, has renounced his citizenship;

(8) is subject to a court order that restrains such person from harassing, stalking, or threatening an intimate partner of such person or child of such intimate partner or person, or engaging in other conduct that would place an intimate partner in reasonable fear of bodily injury to the partner or child …

(9) has been convicted in any court of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence.

[303] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 924: “Firearms, Penalties.” Accessed January 27, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

“(a)(2) Whoever knowingly violates subsection (a)(6), (d), (g), (h), (i), (j), or (o) of section 922 shall be fined as provided in this title, imprisoned not more than 10 years, or both.”

[304] “First Reports Evaluating the Effectiveness of Strategies for Preventing Violence: Firearms Laws.” By Robert A. Hahn and others. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, October 3, 2003. <www.cdc.gov>

The Brady Law … established national restrictions on acquisition of firearms and ammunition from federal firearms licensees. The interim Brady Law (1994–1998) mandated a 5-day waiting period to allow background checks. The permanent Brady Law, enacted in 1998, eliminated the required waiting period. It normally allows 3 days for a background check, after which, if no evidence of a prohibited characteristic is found, the purchase may proceed…. Certain states have established additional restrictions, and some require background checks of all firearms transactions, not only those conducted by federal firearms licensees.

[305] Webpage: “California Gun Laws.” National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action, November 7, 2014. Updated 10/3/2018. <www.nraila.org>

“All firearms sales, transfers, including private transactions and sales at gun shows, must go through a California licensed firearms dealer.”

NOTE: As explained above, federal law requires all dealers to conduct a background check to sell or transfer any firearm. Thus, this California law effectively requires background checks for all firearms transactions.

[306] Report: “State Laws and Published Ordinances – California.” U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, August 2021. <www.atf.gov>

Page 66 (of PDF):

Section 27545. Sale, loan, or transfer of firearm; completion through licensed dealer.

Where neither party to the transaction holds a dealer's license issued pursuant to §§ 26700 to 26915, inclusive, the parties to the transaction shall complete the sale, loan, or transfer of that firearm through a licensed firearms dealer pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with § 28050).

[307] Report: “Source and Use of Firearms Involved in Crimes: Survey of Prison Inmates, 2016.” By Mariel Alper and Lauren Glaze. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, January 2019. <bjs.ojp.gov>

Page 1: “Based on the 2016 Survey of Prison Inmates (SPI), about 1 in 5 (21%) of all state and federal prisoners reported that they had possessed or carried a firearm when they committed the offense for which they were serving time in prison….”

Page 2:

Statistics in this report are based on self-reported data collected through face-to-face interviews with a national sample of state and federal prisoners in the 2016 SPI. … The 2016 SPI data collection was conducted from January through October 2016. The SPI was formerly known as the Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities (SISFCF). The Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) has periodically conducted the survey since the 1970s, with the most recent iteration fielded in 2004. The survey collects information from prisoners on a variety of topics, including firearm possession during the crime for which a prisoner was serving time and how the firearm was used during the crime. It also collects information on the method, source, and process that prisoners used to obtain the firearm. …

Page 7:

Table 5 Among State and Federal Prisoners Who Had Possessed a Firearm During the Offense for Which They Were Serving Time, Sources and Methods Used to Obtain a Firearm, 2016 … Source and method to obtain firearm … All prisoners … Gun shop/store [=] 7.5 … Pawn shop [=] 1.6 … Flea market [=] 0.4 … Gun show [=] 0.8 … Obtained from individual [=] 25.3% … Off the street/underground marketa [=] 43.2% … Note: Prisoners were asked to report all sources and methods of obtaining any firearm they possessed during the offense, so details may not sum to totals. Each source is included in this table when multiple sources were reported. See Methodology. Percentages exclude missing data. Excludes 10.3% of state prisoners and 14.1% of federal prisoners who possessed a firearm during the offense and were missing responses on either source or method of obtaining the firearm. These prisoners were excluded either because they did not provide a valid response or they did not receive the questions due to providing an open-ended response to the previous question about type of weapon. … a Illegal sources of firearms that include markets for stolen goods, middlemen for stolen goods, criminals or criminal enterprises, or individuals or groups involved in sales of illegal drugs.

Page 10:

The target population for the 2016 SPI was prisoners ages 18 and older who were held in a state prison or had a sentence to federal prison in the United States during 2016. Similar to prior iterations, the 2016 survey was a stratified two-stage sample design in which prisons were selected in the first stage and prisoners within sampled facilities were selected in the second stage. The SPI sample was selected from a universe of 2,001 unique prisons (1,808 state and 193 federal) that were either enumerated in the 2012 Census of State and Federal Adult Correctional Facilities or had opened between the completion of the census and July 2014 when the SPI sample of prisons was selected. A total of 364 prisons (306 state and 58 federal) participated in the 2016 survey out of the 385 selected (324 state and 61 federal) for interviewing. The first-stage response rate (i.e., the response rate among selected prisons) was 98.4% (98.1% among state prisons and 100% among federal prisons).3 A total of 24,848 prisoners participated (20,064 state and 4,784 federal) in the 2016 SPI based on a sample of 37,058 prisoners (30,348 state and 6,710 federal). The second-stage response rate (i.e., the response rate among selected prisoners) was 70.0% (69.3% among state prisoners and 72.8% among federal prisoners).4

[308] Report: “Firearm Violence, 1993–2011.” By Michael Planty and Jennifer Truman. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, May 2013. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 13:

In 2004, among state prison inmates who possessed a gun at the time of offense, fewer than 2% bought their firearm at a flea market or gun show, about 10% purchased it from a retail store or pawnshop, 37% obtained it from family or friends, and another 40% obtained it from an illegal source (table 14). …

Table 14 Source of firearms possessed by state prison inmates at time of offense, 1997 and 2004 … Percent of state prison inmates … 2004 … Source of firearm … Retail store [=] 7.3 … Pawnshop [=] 2.6 … Flea market [=] 0.6 … Gun show [=] 0.8 … Family or friend [=] 37.4% … Street/illegal source [=] 40.0% …

Note: Includes only inmates with a current conviction. Estimates may differ from previously published BJS reports. … Source: Bureau of Justice Statistics, Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities, 1997 and 2004.

Page 17: “The SISCF and the SIFCF [Surveys of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities] have provided nationally representative data on state prison inmates and sentenced federal inmates held in federally owned and operated facilities. … In 2004, 14,499 state prisoners in 287 state prisons and 3,686 federal prisoners in 39 federal prisons were interviewed.”

[309] Paper: “Gaps Continue in Firearm Surveillance: Evidence from a Large U.S. City Bureau of Police.” By Anthony Fabio and others. Social Medicine, July 2016. <www.socialmedicine.info>

Page 13:

The objectives of this study are to describe how guns come into police possession, identify the primary source of these guns, determine how guns leave possession of lawful owners, and determine disposition of guns and perpetrators. In order to meet the objectives, we analyzed data on 762 cases in which a gun was recovered by the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police Firearm Tracking Unit (FTU). Descriptive analyses were conducted.

Page 15: “We collected data on 762 cases for 2008. … It is assumed that this included all cases for that year.”

Page 17:

Of the 762 cases, 553 (73 percent) involved a total of 607 perpetrators. Most (n = 478, 78.7%) were carrying or linked to a firearm that did not belong to them. Eighty-six (14.2%) were owners that committed an offense while legally carrying their firearm, 10 (1.6%) were owners illegally carrying their firearm but committing no other offense, and 12 (2.0%) were owners that committed an offense while illegally carrying their firearm (Figure 2).

CALCULATION: 14.2% owned gun and legally carried during crime + 1.6% owned gun and committed sole crime of illegally carrying + 2.0% owned gun, illegally carried and committed other crime = 17.8% of criminals legally owned the gun

[310] Calculated with data from: “National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Section: 2019 Operations Report.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, 2020. <www.fbi.gov>

Page ii:

The National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Section of the FBI’s Criminal Justice Information Services Division has processed firearm background checks since its inception—November 30, 1998. … From November 30, 1998, through December 31, 2019, the NICS processed a total of 333,004,066 transactions. … Since its inception, the NICS Section has denied a total of 1,700,558 transactions.

CALCULATION: 1,700,558 denied transactions / 333,004,066 transactions processed = 0.5% denial rate

[311] Calculated with data from: “National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Section: 2019 Operations Report.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, 2020. <www.fbi.gov>

Page 19: “PTD [Program-to-Date] Federal Denials, Reasons Why the NICS Section Denies, November 30, 1998–December 31, 2019”

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[312] Report: “Law Enforcement: Few Individuals Denied Firearms Purchases Are Prosecuted and ATF Should Assess Use of Warning Notices in Lieu of Prosecutions.” United States Government Accountability Office, September 2018. <www.gao.gov>

Page 2 (of PDF):

Table: Federal National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Firearms Denial Cases Investigated and Prosecuted, Fiscal Year 2017 … Federal NICS Transactions [=] 8,606,286 … Denials … 112,090 … United States Attorney’s Offices Prosecutions [=] 12 …

ATF [U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives] field divisions investigate denial cases based on USAO [U.S. Attorney’s Offices} criteria and generally only refer cases to USAOs for prosecution when aggravating circumstances exist, such as violent felonies or multiple serious offenses over a short period of time. Officials from two of three selected states refer all denial cases for investigation, while one state uses risk-based criteria for selecting cases that include conditions such as felony convictions and misdemeanor crimes of domestic violence. Prosecutors from these three states said they generally pursue cases that involve indications of violence, though individual prosecutors had differing priorities based on public safety concerns.

Page 34: “Of the 12 examples from our six selected field divisions provided, 9 involved delayed denials and 3 involved standard denials. Eleven of the 12 cases have been completed as of May 2018. Of the 9 cases charged in federal court, 1 case was declined by prosecutors, and the other 8 resulted in guilty pleas.”

CALCULATION: 8 guilty pleas / 112,090 total denials = 0.007%

[313] Report: “Enforcement of the Brady Act, 2010: Federal and State Investigations and Prosecutions of Firearm Applicants Denied by a NICS [National Instant Criminal Background Check System] Check in 2010.” By Ronald J. Frandsen. National Criminal Justice Reference Service, August 2012. <www.ncjrs.gov>

Page 9:

The DENI [U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) Denial Enforcement NICS Intelligence] Branch’s referrals to ATF field divisions [for investigations] decreased nearly 50%, from 9,432 for 2006 to 4,732 for 2010. Unlawful possession investigations decreased by 26% from 2006 to 2010 and investigations that resulted in a firearm retrieval decreased by over 21%. The number of charges referred by field offices for prosecution fell by over 77%, from 273 for the 2006 cases to 62 for the 2010 cases. The number of charges that resulted in guilty pleas and verdicts fell by about 82%, from 73 for the 2006 cases to 13 for the 2010 cases.

[314] Report: “Enforcement of the Brady Act, 2010: Federal and State Investigations and Prosecutions of Firearm Applicants Denied by a NICS Check in 2010.” By Ronald J. Frandsen. National Criminal Justice Reference Service, August 2012. <www.ncjrs.gov>

Page 7: “When an investigation is complete, the field office and the U.S. Attorney decide whether the case merits prosecution. A case that is not deemed appropriate for federal prosecution may be referred to a state prosecutor.”

Pages 9–10:

The Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) Firearms Division is a NICS [National Instant Criminal Background Check System] point of contact and conducts background checks on prospective firearm purchasers. PSP denials that involve federal prohibitions are referred to ATF [U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives]. Cases with potential state law violations may be referred to PSP troops or local law enforcement. PSP denied 10,596 firearm transfers in 2010, an increase of almost 11% from the 9,535 denials issued in 2006. Denials referred for investigation increased about 55%, from 285 in 2006 to 441 in 2010. Apprehensions of wanted persons decreased from 119 in 2006 to 114 in 2010 (about 4%) and reported arrests increased from 194 in 2006 to 205 in 2010 (about 6%). Convictions of denied persons decreased by over 25%, from 173 in 2006 to 129 in 2010.

[315] Report: “Enforcement of the Brady Act, 2010: Federal and State Investigations and Prosecutions of Firearm Applicants Denied by a NICS Check in 2010.” By Ronald J. Frandsen. National Criminal Justice Reference Service, August 2012. <www.ncjrs.gov>

Pages 3–4:

A licensee initiates a NICS check by contacting either the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) or a point of contact (POC) agency designated by state government. The FBI and the POC agencies always check three major federal databases, the National Crime Information Center (NCIC), the Interstate Identification Index (III), and the NICS Index. If the transferee is not a citizen of the United States, the [National Instant Criminal Background Check System] NICS will query Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) records. A POC may check additional state records. A check may include contacting an agency that maintains a record that the FBI or POC cannot access directly.

After a search of available federal and state records, the checking agency responds with a notice to the licensee that the transfer may proceed, may not proceed, or is delayed pending further review of the applicant’s record. If further review of a record indicates that the transfer would not violate federal or state law, the checking agency notifies the licensee that the transfer may proceed. If the licensee does not receive a response within three business days, the transfer may proceed at the licensee’s discretion.

[316] Article: “Background Check Flaw Let Dylann Roof Buy Gun, F.B.I. Says.” By Michael S. Schmidt. New York Times, July 10, 2015. <www.nytimes.com>

The man accused of killing nine people in a historically black church in South Carolina last month was able to buy the gun used in the attack because of a breakdown in the federal gun background check system, the F.B.I. said Friday.

Despite having previously admitted to drug possession, the man, Dylann Roof, 21, was allowed to buy the .45-caliber handgun because of mistakes by F.B.I. agents, a failure by local prosecutors to respond to a bureau request for more information about his case, and a weakness in federal gun laws.

[317] Article: “Dylann Roof Guilty on 33 Counts of Federal Hate Crimes for Charleston Church Shooting.” By Dustin Waters and Kevin Sullivan. Washington Post, December 15, 2016. <www.washingtonpost.com>

“Dylann Storm Roof, a ninth-grade dropout who learned to hate black people on the Internet, was convicted Thursday of 33 counts of federal hate crimes for slaughtering nine black parishioners at a church Bible study meeting here last year.”

[318] “Statement by FBI Director James Comey Regarding Dylann Roof.” July 10, 2015. <www.fbi.gov>

On April 11, Roof attempted to purchase a handgun from a store in West Columbia, South Carolina, a near suburb of Columbia. That day was a Saturday. On the next business day, April 13, an examiner in our West Virginia facility was assigned the case and began to process it.

Her initial check of Roof’s criminal history showed that he had been arrested in South Carolina March 1 on a felony drug charge. This charge alone is not enough to deny proceeding with the transaction. As a result, this charge required further inquiry of two potential reasons to deny the transaction. First, the person could have been convicted of a felony since the arrest. Second, the underlying facts of the arrest could show the person to be an unlawful drug user or addict. …

The Columbia police arrested Dylann Roof on drug charges…. Importantly, as part of that arrest, the report by the Columbia police reflected that Roof admitted he was in possession of drugs. If a NICS [National Instant Criminal Background Check System] examiner saw that, Roof would be denied permission to buy a gun. But the examiner never saw that. …

By Thursday, April 16, the case was still listed as “status pending,” so the gun dealer exercised its lawful discretion and transferred the gun to Dylann Roof. …

… But the bottom line is clear: Dylann Roof should not have been able to legally buy that gun that day.

[319] Report: “National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Operations 2010.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, 2011. <www.fbi.gov>

Page 15:

Because of the NICS [National Instant Criminal Background Check System] Section’s commitment to public safety and national security, the search for the needed disposition information continues beyond the three business days allowed by the Brady Act. In some instances, the information is subsequently obtained and a final status determined; however, if the final status (determined after the lapse of three business days) results in a deny decision and the NICS Section is advised by the FFL [Federal Firearms Licensee] that the firearm was transferred, then the ATF [U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives] is notified a prohibited person is in possession of a firearm. In 2010, the NICS Section referred 2,955 firearm retrieval actions to the ATF.

[320] Report: “Enforcement of the Brady Act, 2010: Federal and State Investigations and Prosecutions of Firearm Applicants Denied by a NICS Check in 2010.” By Ronald J. Frandsen. National Criminal Justice Reference Service, August 2012. <www.ncjrs.gov>

Page 6: “Table 2. NICS [National Instant Criminal Background Check System] denials by FBI referred to ATF [U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives] field divisions in 2010 … referrals to ATF field divisions … Delayed denials [=] 2,265”

Page 12:

Table C. 2010 NICS denial cases involving unlawful firearm possession … Outcome of ATF investigation … Delayed [denial =] 1,858 … Retrieval of a firearma … Delayed [cases =] 1,157 … Subject not prohibited [=] 498 … Unable to locate subject [=] 128 … Firearm not transferred [=] 43 … Given to local law enforcement [=] 20 … Referred to other agency [=] 12

NOTE: The FBI refers delayed denials to a branch of the ATF that screens the referrals before referring them to ATF field offices for investigations. According to this report, in 2010, ATF field offices received 2,265 delayed denials for further investigation, but only investigated 1,858 cases. (According to the previous footnote, the FBI referred 2,955 delayed denials to the ATF. There is no apparent explanation for the discrepancy.) As the ATF only investigated 1,858 cases, it is also unclear what occurred in the remaining cases that were not investigated. Some of these may have been duplicate cases or cases that were opened in another year.

[321] Report: “Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives—Enhancing Data Collection Could Improve Management of Investigations.” Government Accountability Office, June 2014. <www.gao.gov>

Page 2 (of PDF):

ATF [U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives] does not have readily available data to track and monitor the timeliness and outcomes of delayed denial investigations. Delayed denial investigations are investigations of individuals who improperly purchased firearms when background checks did not initially determine that the individuals were ineligible to purchase a firearm. N-Force, ATF’s investigations database, does not have information readily available to systematically track the timeliness and outcomes—such as if a firearm is retrieved—of delayed denial investigations. ATF considers these investigations a top priority and is committed to responding to them quickly to protect public safety and prevent violent crime. A mechanism to (1) readily obtain data on the timeliness of such investigations and (2) allow managers to easily query and analyze trends on the outcomes of such investigations could help ensure that ATF is retrieving firearms from prohibited persons to maximize public safety.

[322] “Statement of Timothy J. Heary, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Virginia before the Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights Committee on the Judiciary, United States Senate.” U.S. Department of Justice, February 12, 2013. <www.justice.gov>

Page 6:

There has been much public discussion lately about the Department’s prosecution philosophy with regard to individuals who improperly attempt to purchase a firearm by lying to an FFL[Federal Firearms Licensee]. We do prosecute these cases. For example, the United States Attorney’s Office in Maine recently prosecuted a defendant who falsely completed an application form in the attempted acquisition of a Colt, Model 1911A1, .45 Caliber pistol. The defendant did not reveal that he was subject to a domestic violence protection order obtained by his abused, live-in girlfriend. He was denied the firearm and subsequently prosecuted for violating 18 U.S.C. §922(a)(6), which prohibits making false representations in connection with the acquisition of a firearm. He was convicted at trial and sentenced to six months’ imprisonment. The victim’s family expressed deep appreciation for the officers and prosecutors who helped avert a potentially lethal domestic incident. Despite the nominal sentence, this case provides an example of the type of “lie and try” case that it makes sense for the Department to prosecute, given the defendant’s history of violence, the existence of a domestic violence protection order, and the fact that the woman he had abused continued to reside in the home they had previously shared together.

For the most part, however, the Department prioritizes prosecuting prohibited persons who actually obtain guns—people who have gotten around the background check system and acquired weapons illegally—rather than those who attempted to purchase a firearm through the background check system but were unsuccessful.

[323] Report: “Review of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Enforcement of Brady Act Violations Identified Through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.” U.S. Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General, July 2004. <oig.justice.gov>

Executive Digest (<www.justice.gov>):

The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) reviewed the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ (ATF) enforcement of violations of the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act of 1993 (Brady Act) (Public Law 103–159) that are identified through the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). Specifically, we reviewed the extent to which the ATF investigated violations of the Brady Act referred by the FBI, whether the ATF retrieved firearms issued to prohibited persons in a timely manner, and the extent to which Brady Act violations were referred to and prosecuted by the U.S. Attorneys’ offices (USAO). …

The FBI refers to the ATF the names of all prohibited persons who attempted to or succeeded in obtaining a firearm from an FFL [Federal Firearms Licensee].

[324] Report: “Review of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Enforcement of Brady Act Violations Identified Through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.” U.S. Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General, July 2004. <oig.justice.gov>

Executive Digest (<www.justice.gov>):

Despite the large number of Brady Act violations identified by the FBI, these violations rarely have been prosecuted. Historically, the USAOs [U.S. Attorneys’ offices] have been unsuccessful in achieving convictions in many of these types of cases. Consequently, they have been unwilling to prosecute most NICS [National Instant Criminal Background Check System] cases. …

NICS Subjects Are Not Considered Dangerous

The special agents we spoke with generally commented that they do not consider the vast majority of NICS referral subjects a danger to the public because the prohibiting factors are often minor or based on incidents that occurred many years in the past. For example, one group supervisor cited a retrieval case in which the person was prohibited from owning a firearm because of a felony conviction for stealing four hubcaps from a car. In another example, a Brady Operations Branch specialist cited a case where the person was prohibited due to a 1941 felony conviction for stealing a pig. We also were told that “bad guys” generally do not purchase their firearms through legitimate dealers; instead, they have someone with a clean record purchase the firearm for them (known as a “straw purchase”) through an FFL[Federal Firearms Licensee], buy a firearm on the black market, or purchase the firearm at a flea market or gun show from a non-FFL.

… One of the Brady Operations Branch specialists told us that he once received a denial for a 1941 felony conviction for stealing a pig. A special agent at one of the field offices cited a 1969 felony for stealing four hubcaps from a car.

[325] Report: “Review of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Enforcement of Brady Act Violations Identified Through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.” U.S. Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General, July 2004. <www.justice.gov>

Some Denied Persons Are Subsequently Determined by the ATF Not to Be Prohibited

After performing additional research, the ATF [U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives] frequently determines that the denied individual is not prohibited from possessing a firearm. Generally this occurs because the FBI could not readily determine the individual’s prohibited status due to inaccurate and incomplete automated state records.

We found that 69 of the 197 (35 percent) delayed denials and 16 of the 200 (8 percent) standard denials in our sample were applicants who should not have been prohibited from purchasing a firearm.34 Special agents in each of the four divisions we visited stated that this was a common occurrence. Although the investigative files did not specify why the subjects in our sample were found not to be prohibited, our discussions with ATF personnel identified several reasons why this generally occurs: (1) the subject’s firearm rights had been restored under state law, (2) the subject’s prohibition for a misdemeanor crime of violence did not meet the federal criteria, or (3) a protective order had expired or was about to expire. These circumstances are discussed in detail in the following sections.

[326] Report: “Enforcement of the Brady Act, 2010: Federal and State Investigations and Prosecutions of Firearm Applicants Denied by a NICS Check in 2010.” By Ronald J. Frandsen. National Criminal Justice Reference Service, August 2012. <www.ncjrs.gov>

Page 11: “Table A. Background checks on firearm applicants processed by the FBI in 2010 … Denials [=] 72,659 … Appeal rate [=] 22.7% … Reversal rate [=] 21.1%”

[327] Report: “Gun Control: National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Operations and Related Legislation.” Congressional Research Service, October 17, 2019. <crsreports.congress.gov>

Page 40:

Following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the U.S. government reevaluated its terrorist screening procedures. In February 2004, the DOJ [U.S. Department of Justice] and FBI modified the NICS background check procedures and recalibrated NICS to query an additional file in the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) that included terrorist watchlist records. Prior to that, the FBI did not conduct terrorist watchlist queries as part of firearms background checks because being a known or suspected terrorist was not a disqualifying factor for firearms transfer and possession eligibility; nor is it today under current law.

[328] Webpage: “Summary of Senate Bill 183: Terror Intelligence Improvement Act of 2021.” U.S. Senate, 117th Congress (2021–2022). Accessed February 17, 2022 at <www.congress.gov>

Sponsor: Rubio, Marco [R-FL] (Introduced 02/02/2021) …

This bill establishes a framework to limit the transfer of a firearm or explosive to a person who is or has been under a federal terrorism investigation.

Specifically, the bill requires each federal department or agency to provide to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) information about a person who is or has been under a federal terrorism investigation.

Additionally, it requires the FBI and its Joint Terrorism Task Forces to immediately be notified of a request to transfer a firearm or explosive to a person who is, or was within the previous 10 years, under a federal terrorism investigation (i.e., a suspected terrorist). Further, the Department of Justice must establish a process to delay and prevent the transfer of a firearm or explosive to a suspected terrorist.

[329] Webpage: “Actions on Senate Bill 183: Terror Intelligence Improvement Act of 2021.” U.S. Senate, 117th Congress (2021–2022). Accessed February 17, 2022 at <www.congress.gov>

“02/02/2021 … Introduced in Senate”

[330] Letter: “Update on Firearm and Explosive Background Checks Involving Terrorist Watchlist Records.” From Government Accountability Office to The Honorable Dianne Feinstein, U.S. Senate, March 7, 2016. <www.feinstein.senate.gov>

Page 2:

Overall, since NICS [the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System] started checking against terrorist watchlist records in February 2004, FBI data show that individuals on the terrorist watchlist were involved in firearm or explosives background checks 2,477 times, of which 2,265 (about 91 percent) of the transactions were allowed to proceed and 212 were denied….

Of the 2,477 total transactions, 2,474 involved firearm-related background checks and 3 involved explosives checks. The 3 explosives checks all occurred before March 2010 and the transactions were allowed to proceed. The FBI does not know how often a firearm was actually transferred or if a firearm or explosives license or permit was granted, because gun dealers and explosives dealers are required to maintain but not report this information to the FBI.

Page 3:

Table 1: Number of Firearm or Explosives Background Checks Involving Individuals on the Terrorist Watchlist, February 2004 through December 2015 … Total [=] 2,477c

c The total number of NICS transactions with valid matches to the terrorist watchlist from February 2004 through December 2015 does not include complete statistics for calendar years 2011 and 2012. Of the 2,477 total transactions, 2,474 involved firearm-related background checks and 3 involved explosives checks.

[331] United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 921: “Firearms, Definitions.” Accessed January 29, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(a)(20) The term “crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year” does not include—

(A) any Federal or State offenses pertaining to antitrust violations, unfair trade practices, restraints of trade, or other similar offenses relating to the regulation of business practices, or

(B) any State offense classified by the laws of the State as a misdemeanor and punishable by a term of imprisonment of two years or less.

What constitutes a conviction of such a crime shall be determined in accordance with the law of the jurisdiction in which the proceedings were held. Any conviction which has been expunged, or set aside or for which a person has been pardoned or has had civil rights restored shall not be considered a conviction for purposes of this chapter, unless such pardon, expungement, or restoration of civil rights expressly provides that the person may not ship, transport, possess, or receive firearms.

NOTE: The term “crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year” is used in the section of this code governing who can legally purchase and possess firearms (see here).

[332] Report: “Firearms Purchased From Federal Firearm Licensees Using Bogus Identification.” Government Accountability Office, March 2001. <www.govinfo.gov>

Page 3: “Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) regulations implementing the Brady Act provide that before an FFL [Federal Firearms Licensee] may sell or deliver a firearm, the prospective purchaser must provide photo-identification issued by a government entity.”

[333] Report: “Firearms Purchased from Federal Firearms Licensees Using Bogus Identification.” In “Counterfeit Identification and Identification Fraud Raise Security Concerns.” Government Accountability Office, September 9, 2003. <www.gao.gov>

Page 8:

From October 2000 through February 2001, we used counterfeit driver’s licenses with fictitious identifiers to purchase firearms from federal firearm licensees in five states—Virginia, West Virginia, Montana, New Mexico, and Arizona. The weapons purchased included (1) a 9mm stainless semiautomatic pistol, (2) a .380 semiautomatic pistol, (3) a 7.62mm Russian-manufactured rifle, (4) a .22 caliber semiautomatic rifle, (5) a 9mm semiautomatic pistol, and (6) a .25 caliber semiautomatic pistol.

The five states in which we purchased firearms conformed to the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act of 19937 by requiring instant background checks. For the most part, the federal firearm licensees we contacted adhered to then-existing federal and state laws regarding such purchases, including the instant background checks. Because we used counterfeit driver’s licenses and fictitious identities there was no negative information in the system about the names we created.

[334] Article: “Undercover Federal Probe Finds Defects in Gun Background Checks.” Associated Press, March 22, 2001. <www.latimes.com>

The background check system can determine if a potential gun buyer has a criminal history, but there is no safeguard to verify whether the name or identification being used by the buyer is valid, the General Accounting Office investigation found. …

Officials at the GAO [Government Accountability Office] used off-the-shelf software and laminators to create counterfeit driver’s licenses, inventing fictitious names, Social Security numbers and dates of birth. …

The agents told committee members at a hearing that they were sold guns every time they tried.

[335] Report: “Firearms Purchased From Federal Firearm Licensees Using Bogus Identification.” Government Accountability Office, March 19, 2001. <www.gpo.gov>

Page 1: “The five states that we selected to purchase firearms in … conformed to the Brady Act’s minimum requirements, relying on an instant background check.”

Page 2: “Consistent with the Brady Act … we found that the instant background check does not positively identify purchasers of firearms. Rather, it is a negative check that cannot ensure that the prospective purchaser is not a felon or other prohibited person.”

[336] Report: “The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Investigative Operations at Gun Shows.” U.S. Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General, June 2007. <www.justice.gov>

“A gun show is an exhibition or gathering where guns, gun parts, ammunition, gun accessories, and literature are displayed, bought, sold, traded, and discussed.”

[337] Report: “The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Investigative Operations at Gun Shows.” U.S. Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General, June 2007. <www.justice.gov>

“We found no definitive source for the number of gun shows held annually. … Available estimates of the number of gun shows in the United States ranged from 2,000 to 5,200 annually.”

[338] Report: “The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Investigative Operations at Gun Shows.” U.S. Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General, June 2007. <www.justice.gov>

These shows provide a venue for the sale and exchange of firearms by federal firearms licensees (FFL) who are licensed by the federal government through ATF [Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives] to manufacture, import, or deal in firearms. Such shows also are a venue for private sellers who buy and sell firearms for their personal collections or as a hobby. In these situations, the sellers are not required to have a federal firearms license. Although federal firearms laws apply to both FFLs and private sellers at gun shows, private sellers, unlike FFLs, are under no legal obligation to ask purchasers whether they are legally eligible to buy guns or to verify purchasers’ legal status through background checks.2

[339] Report: “The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Investigative Operations at Gun Shows.” U.S. Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General, June 2007. <www.justice.gov>

We found that ATF [Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives] does not have a formal gun show enforcement program, but conducts investigative operations at gun shows when it has law enforcement intelligence that illegal firearms activity has occurred or is likely to occur at specific gun shows. …

ATF conducted investigative operations at gun shows based on law enforcement intelligence. …

From fiscal year (FY) 2004 through FY 2006, ATF opened approximately 6,233 firearms trafficking investigations. During this 3-year period, ATF Special Agents conducted 202 operations at 195 gun shows…. ATF’s operations at these gun shows led to 121 arrests, resulting in 83 convictions. (Some cases are still pending, so their final dispositions are unknown.) Additionally, ATF seized 5,345 firearms during investigative operations related to these shows.

Seventy-seven percent of ATF’s investigative operations at gun shows were covert operations that targeted specific individuals suspected of firearms trafficking. …

Of the 202 investigative operations conducted by ATF at gun shows, only 23 percent (46) targeted general firearms trafficking at the shows. Further, only 6 of the ATF’s 23 field divisions—Columbus, Houston, New Orleans, Phoenix, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C.—conducted these types of operations. The operations were not part of investigations of specific individuals, but rather were initiated based on intelligence from law enforcement and other sources such as FFLs [Federal Firearms Licensees], that various firearms trafficking crimes were occurring at gun shows in those six divisions’ geographic areas of responsibility.

[340] Report: “Source and Use of Firearms Involved in Crimes: Survey of Prison Inmates, 2016.” By Mariel Alper and Lauren Glaze. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, January 2019. <bjs.ojp.gov>

Page 1: “Based on the 2016 Survey of Prison Inmates (SPI), about 1 in 5 (21%) of all state and federal prisoners reported that they had possessed or carried a firearm when they committed the offense for which they were serving time in prison….”

Page 2:

Statistics in this report are based on self-reported data collected through face-to-face interviews with a national sample of state and federal prisoners in the 2016 SPI. … The 2016 SPI data collection was conducted from January through October 2016. The SPI was formerly known as the Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities (SISFCF). The Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) has periodically conducted the survey since the 1970s, with the most recent iteration fielded in 2004. The survey collects information from prisoners on a variety of topics, including firearm possession during the crime for which a prisoner was serving time and how the firearm was used during the crime. It also collects information on the method, source, and process that prisoners used to obtain the firearm. …

Page 7:

Table 5 Among State and Federal Prisoners Who Had Possessed a Firearm During the Offense for Which They Were Serving Time, Sources and Methods Used to Obtain a Firearm, 2016 … Source and method to obtain firearm … All prisoners … Gun shop/store [=] 7.5 … Pawn shop [=] 1.6 … Flea market [=] 0.4 … Gun show [=] 0.8 … Obtained from individual [=] 25.3% … Off the street/underground marketa [=] 43.2% … Note: Prisoners were asked to report all sources and methods of obtaining any firearm they possessed during the offense, so details may not sum to totals. Each source is included in this table when multiple sources were reported. See Methodology. Percentages exclude missing data. Excludes 10.3% of state prisoners and 14.1% of federal prisoners who possessed a firearm during the offense and were missing responses on either source or method of obtaining the firearm. These prisoners were excluded either because they did not provide a valid response or they did not receive the questions due to providing an open-ended response to the previous question about type of weapon. … a Illegal sources of firearms that include markets for stolen goods, middlemen for stolen goods, criminals or criminal enterprises, or individuals or groups involved in sales of illegal drugs.

Page 10:

The target population for the 2016 SPI was prisoners ages 18 and older who were held in a state prison or had a sentence to federal prison in the United States during 2016. Similar to prior iterations, the 2016 survey was a stratified two-stage sample design in which prisons were selected in the first stage and prisoners within sampled facilities were selected in the second stage. The SPI sample was selected from a universe of 2,001 unique prisons (1,808 state and 193 federal) that were either enumerated in the 2012 Census of State and Federal Adult Correctional Facilities or had opened between the completion of the census and July 2014 when the SPI sample of prisons was selected. A total of 364 prisons (306 state and 58 federal) participated in the 2016 survey out of the 385 selected (324 state and 61 federal) for interviewing. The first-stage response rate (i.e., the response rate among selected prisons) was 98.4% (98.1% among state prisons and 100% among federal prisons).3 A total of 24,848 prisoners participated (20,064 state and 4,784 federal) in the 2016 SPI based on a sample of 37,058 prisoners (30,348 state and 6,710 federal). The second-stage response rate (i.e., the response rate among selected prisoners) was 70.0% (69.3% among state prisoners and 72.8% among federal prisoners).4

[341] Report: “Firearm Violence, 1993–2011.” By Michael Planty and Jennifer Truman. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, May 2013. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 13:

In 2004, among state prison inmates who possessed a gun at the time of offense, fewer than 2% bought their firearm at a flea market or gun show, about 10% purchased it from a retail store or pawnshop, 37% obtained it from family or friends, and another 40% obtained it from an illegal source (table 14). …

Table 14 Source of firearms possessed by state prison inmates at time of offense, 1997 and 2004 … Percent of state prison inmates … 2004 … Source of firearm … Retail store [=] 7.3 % … Pawnshop [=] 2.6% … Flea market [=] 0.6% … Gun show [=] 0.8% … Family or friend [=] 37.4% … Street/illegal source [=] 40.0% …

Note: Includes only inmates with a current conviction. Estimates may differ from previously published BJS [Bureau of Justice Statistics] reports. … Source: Bureau of Justice Statistics, Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities, 1997 and 2004.

Page 17: “Surveys of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities (SISCF and SIFCF) … have provided nationally representative data on state prison inmates and sentenced federal inmates held in federally owned and operated facilities. … In 2004, 14,499 state prisoners in 287 state prisons and 3,686 federal prisoners in 39 federal prisons were interviewed.”

[342] Book: Guns in American Society: An Encyclopedia of History, Politics, Culture, and the Law. Edited by Gregg Lee Carter. ABC-CLIO, 2002. Article: “Right-to-Carry Laws.” By James A. Beckman.

Page 502:

Right-to-carry laws, often also called “shall issue” laws, refer to those state laws that mandate that state law enforcement officials or courts shall issue concealed firearm-carrying permits to applicants who meet fair and minimally restrictive statewide standards established by the state legislature. The right-to-carry laws make the allocation or distribution of firearm-carrying permits mandatory upon state officials so long as the applicants meet the minimum statewide standards.

[343] Report: “Gun Control: Concealed Carry Legislation in the 115th Congress.” By William J. Krouse. Congressional Research Service, January 30, 2018. <crsreports.congress.gov>

Typically, there are two basic types of concealed carry laws: (1) “shall issue,” meaning permits are generally issued to all eligible applicants; and (2) “may issue,” which are more restrictive, meaning authorities enjoy a greater degree of discretion whether to issue permits to individuals. In 1987, concealed carry was generally prohibited in 16 states, the District of Columbia, and three U.S. territories. Twenty-six states and two territories had “may issue” laws, and seven had “shall issue” laws. One state—Vermont— allowed “permitless” carry, meaning otherwise firearms-eligible individuals could carry without a permit. Over the past 31 years, state laws have shifted from prohibitive “no issue” or restrictive “may issue” laws to more permissive “shall issue,” or more recently, “permitless” laws….

[344] Article: “General Assembly Overrides Governor’s Veto of Concealed Carry Bill.” By Ray Long, Monique Garcia and Rick Pearson. Chicago Tribune, July 9, 2013. <www.chicagotribune.com>

Lawmakers made Illinois the last state to allow concealed carry of firearms in two quick votes Tuesday…. The House and Senate voted to override [Governor] Quinn’s amendatory veto of a legislative compromise aimed at satisfying a federal court deadline for legalizing some form of public possession of firearms. Illinois was the last state without some form of legal concealed carry, but the appeals court ruled late last year that the ban was unconstitutional.

[345] Ruling: Moore v. Madigan. U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, December 11, 2012. Majority: Flaum and Posner. Dissenting: Williams. <storage.courtlistener.com>

Pages 1–2:

An Illinois law forbids a person, with exceptions mainly for police and other security personnel, hunters, and members of target shooting clubs … to carry a gun ready to use (loaded, immediately accessible—that is, easy to reach—and uncased). There are exceptions for a person on his own property (owned or rented), or in his home (but if it’s an apartment, only there and not in the apartment building’s common areas), or in his fixed place of business, or on the property of someone who has permitted him to be there with a ready-to-use gun.

Pages 20–21:

The Supreme Court has decided that the amendment confers a right to bear arms for self-defense, which is as important outside the home as inside. The theoretical and empirical evidence (which overall is inconclusive) is consistent with concluding that a right to carry firearms in public may promote self-defense. Illinois had to provide us with more than merely a rational basis for believing that its uniquely sweeping ban is justified by an increase in public safety. It has failed to meet this burden. The Supreme Court’s interpretation of the Second Amendment therefore compels us to reverse the decisions in the two cases before us and remand them to their respective district courts for the entry of declarations of unconstitutionality and permanent injunctions. Nevertheless we order our mandate stayed for 180 days to allow the Illinois legislature to craft a new gun law that will impose reasonable limitations, consistent with the public safety and the Second Amendment as interpreted in this opinion, on the carrying of guns in public.

[346] Article: “A History of U.S. Handgun Carry, 1976–2021.” By Larry Arnold. Texas Handgun Association. Accessed March 28, 2022 at <txhga.org>

The most significant bill was House Bill 1927, which made Texas the 20th Constitutional Carry state, and substantially rewrote Texas law regarding carrying weapons. It legalizes the carrying of a firearm by a person who “is 21 years of age or older and not otherwise prohibited by state or federal law from possessing the firearm,” in most places persons who now have a License to Carry a Handgun can. Under the new law there are 14 listed locations where non-licensed carry is prohibited, with licensed carry allowed in a few of them.

[347] Brief submitted to the U.S. Supreme Court: Rogers v. Grewal. Michel & Associates and others (Attorneys in support of Rogers), February 1, 2019. <www.supremecourt.gov>

Pages 11–12: “Third, fourteen states now have ‘permitless carry,’ referred to by some as constitutional carry, in which any person who is eligible to possess a firearm under federal and state law can carry the firearm, generally either openly or concealed.”

[348] Connecticut law allows local police, wardens, or selectmen to issue temporary concealed carry permits to private citizens, which the state government reviews for issuance of a “state permit to carry a pistol or revolver.”*‡ Between January 1, 2000 and December 31, 2009, the state of Connecticut issued 166,190 permits, while during almost the same period (January 1, 2000–February 24, 2010), the state denied 436 permits (2.6% of the total).§

NOTES:

  • † Report: “Gun Permit Issues.” By Veronica Rose. Connecticut Office of Legislative Research, April 10, 2008. <www.cga.ct.gov>
    “Connecticut is a ‘may issue’ state, in that the permit-issuing official has discretion to determine whether to issue or revoke a permit.”
  • ‡ Connecticut Law: Title 29, Chapter 529, Section 29-28(b): “Permit to carry pistol or revolver.” Accessed January 29, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

“Upon the application of any person having a bona fide permanent residence within the jurisdiction of any such authority, such chief of police, warden or selectman may issue a temporary state permit to such person to carry a pistol or revolver within the state, provided such authority shall find that such applicant intends to make no use of any pistol or revolver which such applicant may be permitted to carry under such permit other than a lawful use and that such person is a suitable person to receive such permit.”

  • § Correspondence from the Connecticut Special Licensing & Firearms Unit to Just Facts, February 24, 2010 and March 18, 2010.

[349] Article: “The State (by State) of Right-To-Carry.” By Dave Kopel. National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action, July 28, 2006. <www.nraila.org>

Do-Issue: Three states—Alabama, Connecticut and Iowa—have statutes that are not completely Shall-Issue, but that reserve some discretion to the issuing law enforcement agency. In these states, local law enforcement will generally issue a permit to the same kinds of persons who would qualify for a permit in a Shall-Issue state, and many times these states are included on Shall-Issue state lists.

Capricious-Issue: Eight coastal states have permit laws but give local law enforcement almost unlimited discretion to deny permits. Although there can be significant variation from one locality to another, permits are rarely issued in most jurisdictions, except to celebrities or other influential people. These Capricious-Issue states are Hawaii, California, Delaware (not as bad as the others, in practice), Maryland, New Jersey (the worst), New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

[350] Webpage: “Handgunlaw.us.” By Steve Aikens and Gary Slider. Last updated May 11, 2022. <www.handgunlaw.us>

NOTES:

  • Overviews of the laws in each state are provided via the clickable map.
  • This was the only comprehensive, up-to-date, and easily accessible source that Just Facts was able to locate for this information.
  • For more detailed information on the laws of each state, see the report: “State Laws and Published Ordinance—Firearms (34th Edition).” U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, March 2020. <www.atf.gov>

[351] Webpage: “Handgunlaw.us.” By Steve Aikens and Gary Slider. Last updated May 11, 2022. <www.handgunlaw.us>

NOTES:

  • Overviews of the laws in each state are provided via the clickable map.
  • This was the only comprehensive, up-to-date, and easily accessible source that Just Facts was able to locate for this information.
  • For more detailed information on the laws of each state, see the report: “State Laws and Published Ordinance—Firearms (34th Edition).” U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, March 2020. <www.atf.gov>

[352] Rhode Island Law Title 11, Chapter 11-47, Section 11-47-11: “Criminal Offenses, Weapons, License or Permit to Carry Concealed Pistol or Revolver.” Rhode Island General Assembly. Accessed February 1, 2022 at <webserver.rilin.state.ri.us>

(a) The licensing authorities of any city or town shall, upon application of any person twenty-one (21) years of age or over having a bona fide residence or place of business within the city or town, or of any person twenty-one (21) years of age or over having a bona fide residence within the United States and a license or permit to carry a pistol or revolver concealed upon his or her person issued by the authorities of any other state or subdivision of the United States, issue a license or permit to the person to carry concealed upon his or her person a pistol or revolver everywhere within this state for four (4) years from date of issue, if it appears that the applicant has good reason to fear an injury to his or her person or property or has any other proper reason for carrying a pistol or revolver, and that he or she is a suitable person to be so licensed.

[353] Rhode Island Law Title 11, Chapter 11-47, Section 11-47-18: “Criminal Offenses, Weapons, License or Permit Issued by Attorney General on Showing of Need.” Rhode Island General Assembly. Accessed February 1, 2022 at <webserver.rilin.state.ri.us>

“(a) The attorney general may issue a license or permit to any person twenty-one (21) years of age or over to carry a pistol or revolver, whether concealed or not, upon his or her person upon a proper showing of need….”

[354] Article: “Few Have Legal Right to Carry Concealed Handgun in Rhode Island.” By Tim White. WPRI Eyewitness News, August 25, 2016. <wpri.com>

Very few Rhode Islanders have a permit to legally carry a concealed handgun, but the vast majority of those who do submit their applications through the state rather than their local cities or towns, according to a Target 12 review of data.

Target 12 requested data on concealed carry weapon permits from every police department as well as the Rhode Island Attorney General’s office. By law, people seeking a concealed carry permit can submit an application through a local police department or the attorney general’s office.

As of the end of the 2015 calendar year, the data shows 3,577 Rhode Island residents had an active permit to carry a hidden handgun, which is just 0.34% of the population. …

Nearly 70 percent of active permits—2,489 of the 3,577 statewide—were obtained through the attorney general’s office. A spokesperson for Attorney General Peter Kilmartin said in 2015 the state approved 98 percent of all new concealed carry applications and 96 percent of renewals. Towns approved 87 percent of all applications. …

In Warren, the data shows the town hasn’t issued a single concealed carry permit dating back to 2010. All of the 21 active permits there were issued by the attorney general’s office. In an email, Chief Peter Achilli said the “historic practice is to refer all inquires to the attorney general’s office where there is an established and effective process of issuance and statewide record keeping.”

[355] Report: “Permitless Carry States.” Handgunlaw.us. Last updated July 1, 2022. <handgunlaw.us>

State

Effective Date

Alabama

January 1, 2023

Alaska

September 9, 2003

Arizona

July 29, 2010

Arkansas

August 16, 2013

Indiana

July 1, 2022

Georgia

April 12, 2022

Idaho

July 1, 2016

Indiana

July 1, 2022

Iowa

July 1, 2021

Kansas

July 1, 2015

Kentucky

June 27, 2019

Maine

October 12, 2015

Mississippi

July 1, 2015

Missouri

January 1, 2017

Montana

September 15, 1991

New Hampshire

February 22, 2017

North Dakota

August, 1, 2017

Ohio

June 13, 2022.

Oklahoma

November 1, 2019

South Dakota

July 1, 2019

Tennessee

July 1, 2021.

Texas

September 1, 2021.

Utah

May 5, 2021.

Vermont

March 4, 1791

West Virginia

May 26, 2016

Wyoming

July 1, 2011

[356] Report: “Permitless Carry States.” Handgunlaw.us. Last updated July 1, 2022. <handgunlaw.us>

State

Effective Date

Alabama

January 1, 2023

[357] Paper: “Carrying Concealed Weapons in Self-Defense: Florida Adopts Uniform Regulations for the Issuance of Concealed Weapons Permits.” By Richard Getchall. Florida State University Law Review, 1987. Pages 751–791. <ir.law.fsu.edu>

Page 777: “The concealed weapons Act is named the Jack Hagler Self Defense Act225….”

Page 789: “The Jack Hagler Self Defense Act became law on October 1, 1987.306

[358] Florida Law 790.06: “Weapons and Firearms, License to Carry Concealed Weapon or Firearm.” Accessed February 1, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

(2) The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services shall issue a license if the applicant:

(a) Is a resident of the United States …

(b) Is 21 years of age or older;

(c) Does not suffer from a physical infirmity which prevents the safe handling of a weapon or firearm;

(d) Is not ineligible to possess a firearm pursuant to s. 790.23 by virtue of having been convicted of a felony;

(e) Has not been:

1. Found guilty of a crime under the provisions of chapter 893 or similar laws of any other state relating to controlled substances within a 3-year period immediately preceding the date on which the application is submitted; or

2. Committed for the abuse of a controlled substance under chapter 397 or under the provisions of former chapter 396 or similar laws of any other state. An applicant who has been granted relief from firearms disabilities pursuant to s. 790.065(2)(a)4.d. or pursuant to the law of the state in which the commitment occurred is deemed not to be committed for the abuse of a controlled substance under this subparagraph;

(f) Does not chronically and habitually use alcoholic beverages or other substances to the extent that his or her normal faculties are impaired. …

(g) Desires a legal means to carry a concealed weapon or firearm for lawful self-defense;

(h) Demonstrates competence with a firearm by any one of the following:

1. Completion of any hunter education or hunter safety course approved by the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission or a similar agency of another state;

2. Completion of any National Rifle Association firearms safety or training course;

3. Completion of any firearms safety or training course or class available to the general public offered by a law enforcement agency, junior college, college, or private or public institution or organization or firearms training school, using instructors certified by the National Rifle Association, Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission, or the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services;

4. Completion of any law enforcement firearms safety or training course or class offered for security guards, investigators, special deputies, or any division or subdivision of a law enforcement agency or security enforcement;

5. Presents evidence of equivalent experience with a firearm through participation in organized shooting competition or military service;

6. Is licensed or has been licensed to carry a firearm in this state or a county or municipality of this state, unless such license has been revoked for cause; or

7. Completion of any firearms training or safety course or class conducted by a state-certified or National Rifle Association certified firearms instructor …

(i) Has not been adjudicated an incapacitated person under s. 744.331, or similar laws of any other state. An applicant who has been granted relief from firearms disabilities pursuant to s. 790.065(2)(a)4.d. or pursuant to the law of the state in which the adjudication occurred is deemed not to have been adjudicated an incapacitated person under this paragraph;

(j) Has not been committed to a mental institution under chapter 394, or similar laws of any other state. An applicant who has been granted relief from firearms disabilities pursuant to s. 790.065(2)(a)4.d. or pursuant to the law of the state in which the commitment occurred is deemed not to have been committed in a mental institution under this paragraph;

(k) Has not had adjudication of guilt withheld or imposition of sentence suspended on any felony unless 3 years have elapsed since probation or any other conditions set by the court have been fulfilled, or expunction has occurred;

(l) Has not been issued an injunction that is currently in force and effect and that restrains the applicant from committing acts of domestic violence or acts of repeat violence; and

(m) Is not prohibited from purchasing or possessing a firearm by any other provision of Florida or federal law.

[359] Calculated with data from:

a) “Concealed Weapon or Firearm License Summary Report.” Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Licensing, January 3, 2022.

<www.fdacs.gov>

10/01/1987 - 12/31/2021

Licenses Issued

5,211,848

Licenses Valid

2,459,530

b) Dataset: “Table S0101: Age and Sex, 2019 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates.” U.S. Census Bureau. Accessed February 1, 2022 at <data.census.gov>

“Florida … Total Population … Selected Age Categories … 21 years and over [=] 16,467,996”

CALCULATION: 2,459,530 valid licenses / 16,467,996 Florida population, 21 years and older = 15% of the population 21 years and older

[360] Chart constructed with data from:

a) Dataset: “Estimated Offenses, Florida, 1960–2008.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Uniform Crime Reporting Program. Sent from the FBI to Just Facts on June 15, 2010.

b) Report: “Crime in the United States 2009–2019.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division. <ucr.fbi.gov>

2009–2015, 2017–2019 — “Table 5: Crime in the United States, by State.”

2016 — “Table 3: Crime in the United States, by State.”

“Table 1: Crime in the United States by Volume and Rate per 100,000 Inhabitants, 2000–2019.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data is available upon request.

[361] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[362] Report: “2019 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, September 2020. <ucr.fbi.gov>

“Table 1 Data Declaration.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

Because not all law enforcement agencies provide data for complete reporting periods, the FBI includes estimated crime numbers in these presentations. The FBI computes estimates for participating agencies that do not provide 12 months of complete data. For agencies supplying 3 to 11 months of data, the national UCR [Unified Crime Reporting] Program estimates for the missing data by following a standard estimation procedure using the data provided by the agency. If an agency has supplied less than 3 months of data, the FBI computes estimates by using the known crime figures of similar areas within a state and assigning the same proportion of crime volumes to nonreporting agencies. The estimation process considers the following: population size covered by the agency; type of jurisdiction, [such as] police department versus sheriff’s office; and geographic location.

[363] “Concealed Weapon or Firearm License Summary Report.” Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Licensing, January 3, 2022.

<www.fdacs.gov>

10/01/87 – 12/31/2021

Applications Received

5,355,742

Licenses Issued

5,211,848

Licenses Valid

2,459,530

Applications Denied

72,047

Disqualifying History

26,142

Incomplete Application

45,905

Licenses Revoked †

17,713

Reinstated ‡

1,413

CALCULATION: 17,713 Licenses Revoked / 5,211,848 Licenses Issued = 0.3%

NOTES:

  • † As of January 2011, the agency no longer maintains statistical information concerning the breakdown of license revocations by type.
  • ‡ Statistics regarding number of licenses reinstated were not maintained prior to January 1990.

[364] Webpage: “Concealed Weapon / Firearm Summary Report.” Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Licensing, July 31, 2010. <www.freshfromflorida.com>

10/1/87 – 07/31/10

Applications Received

1,848,835

Licenses Issued

1,825,143

Licenses Valid

746,430

Applications Denied

12,648

Criminal History

4,242

Incomplete Application

8,406

Licenses Revoked

5,674

Clemency Rule Change or Legislative Change

66

Illegible Prints With No Response

10

Crime Prior to Licensure

522

Crime After Licensure

4,955

—Firearm Utilized—

[168]

Other

121

Reinstated†

633

† Statistics regarding number of licenses reinstated not maintained prior to January 1990.

[365] Article: “Guns in America: Part II: Texas Massacre, Fear of Crime Spur Concealed-Gun Laws.” By Ralph Winingham. San Antonio Express News, 1997. <www.chron.com>


“In January 1996, a law took effect allowing Texans to carry loaded handguns if they obtain a license and complete a safety course.”

[366] Report: “Texas License to Carry a Handgun Statute and Selected Laws, 2020–2021.” Texas Department of Public Safety, November 29, 2021. <www.dps.texas.gov>

Pages 11–14:

Chapter 411 Subchapter H: License to Carry a Handgun

Section 411.172. Eligibility.

(a) A person is eligible for a license to carry a handgun if the person:

(1) is a legal resident of this state for the six-month period preceding the date of application under this subchapter or is otherwise eligible for a license under Section 411.173(a);

(2) is at least 21 years of age;

(3) has not been convicted of a felony;

(4) is not charged with the commission of a Class A or Class B misdemeanor or equivalent offense, or of an offense under Section 42.01, Penal Code, or equivalent offense, or of a felony under an information or indictment;

(5) is not a fugitive from justice for a felony or a Class A or Class B misdemeanor or equivalent offense;

(6) is not a chemically dependent person;

(7) is not incapable of exercising sound judgment with respect to the proper use and storage of a handgun;

(8) has not, in the five years preceding the date of application, been convicted of a Class A or Class B misdemeanor or equivalent offense or of an offense under Section 42.01, Penal Code, or equivalent offense;

(9) is fully qualified under applicable federal and state law to purchase a handgun;

(10) has not been finally determined to be delinquent in making a child support payment administered or collected by the attorney general;

(11) has not been finally determined to be delinquent in the payment of a tax or other money collected by the comptroller, the tax collector of a political subdivision of the state, or any agency or subdivision of the state;

(12) is not currently restricted under a court protective order or subject to a restraining order affecting the spousal relationship, other than a restraining order solely affecting property interests;

(13) has not, in the 10 years preceding the date of application, been adjudicated as having engaged in delinquent conduct violating a penal law of the grade of felony; and

(14) has not made any material misrepresentation, or failed to disclose any material fact, in an application submitted pursuant to Section 411.174. …

(g) Notwithstanding Subsection (a)(2), a person who is at least 18 years of age but not yet 21 years of age is eligible for a license to carry a handgun if the person:

(1) is a member or veteran of the United States armed forces, including a member or veteran of the reserves or national guard;

(2) was discharged under honorable conditions, if discharged from the United States armed forces, reserves, or national guard….

Pages 16–17:

Section 411.174. Application.

(a) An applicant for a license to carry a handgun must submit to the director’s designee described by Section 411.176: …

(7) evidence of handgun proficiency, in the form and manner required by the department….

Pages 35–36:

Section 411.188. Handgun Proficiency Requirement.

(a) The director by rule shall establish minimum standards for handgun proficiency and shall develop a course to teach handgun proficiency and examinations to measure handgun proficiency. The course to teach handgun proficiency is required for each person who seeks to obtain a license and must contain training sessions divided into two parts. One part of the course must be classroom instruction and the other part must be range instruction and an actual demonstration by the applicant of the applicant’s ability to safely and proficiently use a handgun. An applicant must be able to demonstrate, at a minimum, the degree of proficiency that is required to effectively operate a handgun. The department shall distribute the standards, course requirements, and examinations on request to any qualified handgun instructor or approved online course provider seeking to administer the course or a part of the course as described by Subsection (b).

(b) Only qualified handgun instructors may administer the range instruction part of the handgun proficiency course. A qualified handgun instructor or approved online course provider may administer the classroom instruction part of the handgun proficiency course. The classroom instruction part of the course must include not less than four hours and not more than six hours of instruction on:

(1) the laws that relate to weapons and to the use of deadly force;

(2) handgun use and safety, including use of restraint holsters and methods to ensure the secure carrying of openly carried handguns;

(3) nonviolent dispute resolution; and

(4) proper storage practices for handguns with an emphasis on storage practices that eliminate the possibility of accidental injury to a child. …

(d) Except as provided by Subsection (e), only a qualified handgun instructor may administer the proficiency examination to obtain a license. The proficiency examination must include:

(1) a written section on the subjects listed in Subsection (b); and

(2) a physical demonstration of proficiency in the use of one or more handguns and in handgun safety procedures.

[367] Calculated with data from:

a) Report: “Active License/Certified Instructor Counts as of December 31, 2020.” Texas Department of Public Safety, Regulatory Services Division, Handgun Licensing Program. <www.dps.texas.gov>

“Active License Holders: 1,626,242”

b) Dataset: “Table S0101: Age and Sex, 2019 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates.” U.S. Census Bureau. Accessed February 2, 2022 at <data.census.gov>

“Texas … Total Population … Selected Age Categories … 21 years and over [=] 20,340,329”

CALCULATION: 1,626,242 active licensees / 20,340,329 Texas population aged 21 years and older = 8%

[368] Chart constructed with data from:

a) Dataset: “Estimated Offenses, Texas, 1960–2008.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Uniform Crime Reporting Program. Sent from the FBI to Just Facts on June 15, 2010.

b) Report: “Crime in the United States 2009–2019.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division. <ucr.fbi.gov>

2009–2015, 2017–2019 — “Table 5: Crime in the United States, by State.”

2016 — “Table 3: Crime in the United States, by State.”

“Table 1: Crime in the United States by Volume and Rate per 100,000 Inhabitants, 2000–2019.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data is available upon request.

[369] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[370] Report: “2019 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, September 2020. <ucr.fbi.gov>

“Table 1 Data Declaration.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

Because not all law enforcement agencies provide data for complete reporting periods, the FBI includes estimated crime numbers in these presentations. The FBI computes estimates for participating agencies that do not provide 12 months of complete data. For agencies supplying 3 to 11 months of data, the national UCR [Unified Crime Reporting] Program estimates for the missing data by following a standard estimation procedure using the data provided by the agency. If an agency has supplied less than 3 months of data, the FBI computes estimates by using the known crime figures of similar areas within a state and assigning the same proportion of crime volumes to nonreporting agencies. The estimation process considers the following: population size covered by the agency; type of jurisdiction, [such as] police department versus sheriff’s office; and geographic location.

[371] Public notice: “Governor Abbott Signs Legislation Expanding Texans’ Second Amendment Rights.” Office of the Governor, Greg Abbott, June 13, 2015. <gov.texas.gov>

Governor Greg Abbott today signed HB [House bill] 910 (Phillips, R-Sherman; Estes, R-Wichita Falls) and SB [Senate bill] 11 (Birdwell, R-Granbury; Fletcher, R-Cypress), which expand Texans’ Second Amendment rights. Both bills implement proposals in the Governor’s Bicentennial Blueprint. HB 910, known as “open carry,” authorizes individuals with a license to carry a holstered handgun openly in all locations that allow the licensed carrying of a concealed handgun. SB 11, known as “campus carry” authorizes individuals with a license to carry a concealed handgun on campuses of public institutions of higher education.

[372] Michigan Law Section 28.421a: “Firearms, Concealed Pistol Licenses; Issuance; Creation of Standardized System.” Michigan Legislature. Accessed February 2, 2022 at <law.justia.com>


“It is the intent of the legislature to create a standardized system for issuing concealed pistol licenses to prevent criminals and other violent individuals from obtaining a license to carry a concealed pistol, [and] to allow law abiding residents to obtain a license to carry a concealed pistol. … Eff. July 1, 2001.”

[373] Michigan Law Section 28.422: “License to Purchase, Carry, Possess, or Transport Pistol; Issuance; Qualifications; Applications….” Michigan Legislature. Accessed February 2, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

Sec. 2.

(1) Except as otherwise provided in this act, a person shall not purchase, carry, possess, or transport a pistol in this state without first having obtained a license for the pistol as prescribed in this section. …

(3) The commissioner or chief of police of a city, township, or village police department that issues licenses to purchase, carry, possess, or transport pistols, or his or her duly authorized deputy, or the sheriff or his or her duly authorized deputy, in the parts of a county not included within a city, township, or village having an organized police department, in discharging the duty to issue licenses shall with due speed and diligence issue licenses to purchase, carry, possess, or transport pistols to qualified applicants unless he or she has probable cause to believe that the applicant would be a threat to himself or herself or to other individuals, or would commit an offense with the pistol that would violate a law of this or another state or of the United States. An applicant is qualified if all of the following circumstances exist: …

(b) The person is 18 years of age or older or, if the seller is licensed under 18 USC 923†, is 21 years of age or older.

(c) The person is a citizen of the United States or an alien lawfully admitted into the United States and is a legal resident of this state. …

(d) A felony charge or a criminal charge listed in section 5b against the person is not pending at the time of application.

(e) The person is not prohibited from possessing, using, transporting, selling, purchasing, carrying, shipping, receiving, or distributing a firearm under section 224f of the Michigan penal code, 1931 PA 328, MCL 750.224f.

(f) The person has not been adjudged insane in this state or elsewhere unless he or she has been adjudged restored to sanity by court order.

(g) The person is not under an order of involuntary commitment in an inpatient or outpatient setting due to mental illness.

(h) The person has not been adjudged legally incapacitated in this state or elsewhere. This subdivision does not apply to a person who has had his or her legal capacity restored by order of the court.

NOTE: † This refers to a federally licensed firearms dealer: United States Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 44, Section 923: “Licensing.” Current as of February 1, 2010. Accessed February 2, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

“(a) No person shall engage in the business of importing, manufacturing, or dealing in firearms, or importing or manufacturing ammunition, until he has filed an application with and received a license to do so from the Attorney General.”

[374] Michigan Law Section 28.425b: “License Application….” Michigan Legislature. Accessed February 2, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

Sec. 5b.

(1) To obtain a license to carry a concealed pistol, an individual shall apply to the county clerk in the county in which the individual resides. … The application must contain all of the following: …

(h) A certificate stating that the applicant has completed the training course prescribed by this act.

[375] Michigan Law Section 28.425j: “Pistol Training or Safety Program; Conditions; Prohibited Conduct; Violation of Subsection (3) as Felony; Certificate of Completion.” Michigan Legislature. Accessed February 17, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

Sec. 5j.

(1) A pistol training or safety program described in section 5b(7)(c) meets the requirements for knowledge or training in the safe use and handling of a pistol only if the training was provided within 5 years preceding the date of application and consisted of not less than 8 hours of instruction and all of the following conditions are met:

(a) The program is certified by this state or a national or state firearms training organization and provides 5 hours of instruction in, but is not limited to providing instruction in, all of the following:

(i) The safe storage, use, and handling of a pistol including, but not limited to, safe storage, use, and handling to protect child safety.

(ii) Ammunition knowledge, and the fundamentals of pistol shooting.

(iii) Pistol shooting positions.

(iv) Firearms and the law, including civil liability issues and the use of deadly force. This portion must be taught by an attorney or an individual trained in the use of deadly force.

(v) Avoiding criminal attack and controlling a violent confrontation.

(vi) All laws that apply to carrying a concealed pistol in this state.

(b) The program provides at least 3 hours of instruction on a firing range and requires firing at least 30 rounds of ammunition.

(c) The program provides a certificate of completion that states the program complies with the requirements of this section and that the individual successfully completed the course, and that contains the printed name and original handwritten signature of the course instructor. The certificate of completion must contain the statement, “This course complies with section 5j of 1927 PA 372.”. For certificates issued on or after December 1, 2015, each certificate must also contain both of the following, which must be printed on the face of the certificate or attached in a separate document:

(i) The instructor's name and telephone number.

(ii) The name and telephone number of the state agency or a state or national firearms training organization that has certified the individual as an instructor for purposes of this section, his or her instructor certification number, if any, and the expiration date of that certification.

(d) The instructor of the course is certified by this state or a state or national firearms training organization to teach the pistol safety training courses described in this section. The county clerk shall not require any other certification or require an instructor to register with the county or county clerk.

[376] Chart constructed with data from:

a) Dataset: “Estimated Offenses, Michigan, 1960–2008.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Uniform Crime Reporting Program. Sent from the FBI to Just Facts on June 15, 2010.

b) Report: “Crime in the United States 2009–2019.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services Division. <ucr.fbi.gov>

2009–2015, 2017–2019 — “Table 5: Crime in the United States, by State.”

2016 — “Table 3: Crime in the United States, by State.”

“Table 1: Crime in the United States by Volume and Rate per 100,000 Inhabitants, 2000–2019.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data is available upon request.

[377] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[378] Report: “2019 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, September 2020. <ucr.fbi.gov>

“Table 1 Data Declaration.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

Because not all law enforcement agencies provide data for complete reporting periods, the FBI includes estimated crime numbers in these presentations. The FBI computes estimates for participating agencies that do not provide 12 months of complete data. For agencies supplying 3 to 11 months of data, the national UCR [Unified Crime Reporting] Program estimates for the missing data by following a standard estimation procedure using the data provided by the agency. If an agency has supplied less than 3 months of data, the FBI computes estimates by using the known crime figures of similar areas within a state and assigning the same proportion of crime volumes to nonreporting agencies. The estimation process considers the following: population size covered by the agency; type of jurisdiction, [such as] police department versus sheriff’s office; and geographic location.

[379] Report: “Mass Murder with Firearms: Incidents and Victims, 1999–2013.” By William J. Krouse and Daniel J. Richardson. Congressional Research Service, July 30, 2015. <fas.org>

Page 10: “ ‘[M]ass shooting’ means a multiple homicide incident in which four or more victims are murdered with firearms—not including the offender(s)—within one event, and in one or more locations in close geographical proximity.”

[380] Paper: “Patterns and Prevalence of Lethal Mass Violence.” By Grant Duwe. Criminology & Public Policy, December 16, 2019. Pages 17–35. <onlinelibrary.wiley.com>

Page 18: “A mass murder has been defined as an incident in which four or more victims are killed—with any type of weapon—within a 24-hour period (Duwe, 2007; Fox & Levin, 2011). A mass shooting, as defined here, is a mass murder carried out with a firearm. Therefore, a mass shooting is any gun-related mass murder regardless of whether it occurred in a residential setting or a public location.”

[381] Calculated with data from:

a) Dataset: “Estimated Crime in United States—Total.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Department of Justice. Accessed August 20, 2020 at <www.ucrdatatool.gov>

b) Report: “2018 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, September 2019.

<ucr.fbi.gov>

“Table 1: Crime in the United States by Volume and Rate Per 100,000 Inhabitants, 1999–2018.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

c) Paper: “Patterns and Prevalence of Lethal Mass Violence.” By Grant Duwe. Criminology & Public Policy, December 16, 2019. Pages 17–35. <onlinelibrary.wiley.com>

Pages 25–26: “Table 1: Trends in the Prevalence and Severity of Mass Shootings, 1976–2018.”

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[382] Chart constructed with data from the paper: “Patterns and Prevalence of Lethal Mass Violence.” By Grant Duwe. Criminology & Public Policy, December 16, 2019. Pages 17–35. <onlinelibrary.wiley.com>

Pages 25–26: “Table 1: Trends in the Prevalence and Severity of Mass Shootings, 1976–2018.”

NOTES:

  • The Congressional Research Service tracked an average of 21 incidents per year during 1999–2013, which accords with Grant Duwe’s average during the same time frame.
  • An Excel file containing the data is available upon request.

[383] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[384] Report: “Summary of State and Federal Machine Gun Laws.” By Veronica Rose and Meghan Reilly. Connecticut General Assembly, Office of Legislative Research, January 12, 2009. <www.cga.ct.gov>

Summary

Federal law strictly regulates machine guns (firearms that fire many rounds of ammunition, without manual reloading, with a single pull of the trigger).

Among other things, federal law:

1. requires all machine guns, except antique firearms, not in the U.S. government's possession to be registered with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF);

2. bars private individuals from transferring or acquiring machine guns except those lawfully possessed and registered before May 19, 1986;

3. requires anyone transferring or manufacturing machine guns to get prior ATF approval and register the firearms;

4. with very limited exceptions, imposes a $200 excise tax whenever a machine gun is transferred;

5. bars interstate transport of machine guns without ATF approval; and

6. imposes harsh penalties for machine gun violations, including imprisonment of up to 10 years, a fine of up to $250,000, or both for possessing an unregistered machine gun. …

Federal Law and Machine Guns

Federal law defines a machine gun as “any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger.” This definition includes the frame or receiver, any part or combination of parts designed and intended, solely and exclusively, for use in converting a weapon into a machine gun, and any combination of parts from which a machine gun can be assembled (26 USC § 5845(b), 27 CFR §§ 478.11 & 479.11). It does not include “antique firearms” (26 USC § 5845(a) & (g)).

Since 1934, Congress has strictly regulated the manufacture, transfer, and possession of machine guns. The firearms are regulated by the 1934 National Firearms Act (NFA) (26 USC § 5801 et seq.) and the 1968 Gun Control Act as amended by the 1986 Firearms Owners’ Protection Act (18 USC § 921 et seq.).

[385] National Firearms Act Handbook. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Revised April 2009. <www.atf.gov>

Page 1:

History of the National Firearms Act (NFA)

1.1.1 The NFA of 1934. The NFA was originally enacted in 1934.1 Similar to the current NFA, the original Act imposed a tax on the making and transfer of firearms defined by the Act, as well as a special (occupational) tax on persons and entities engaged in the business of importing, manufacturing, and dealing in NFA firearms. The law also required the registration of all NFA firearms with the Secretary of the Treasury. Firearms subject to the 1934 Act included shotguns and rifles having barrels less than 18 inches in length, certain firearms described as “any other weapons,” machineguns, and firearm mufflers and silencers.

Page 2: “The [Firearm Owner’s Protection] Act also amended the GCA [Gun Control Act of 1968] to prohibit the transfer or possession of machineguns.7 Exceptions were made for transfers of machineguns to, or possession of machineguns by, government agencies, and those lawfully possessed before the effective date of the prohibition, May 19, 1986.”

Pages 94–95:

The term “machinegun” means any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger. The term shall also include the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun, and any combination of parts from which a machinegun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person.

NOTE: Despite the military’s distinction between machine guns and other automatic weapons like assault rifles, the U.S. Department of Justice considers any automatic firearm to be a machine gun under the National Firearms Act. See the excerpt above and the next two footnotes for documentation.

[386] ATF Guidebook – Importation & Verification of Firearms, Ammunition, and Implements of War. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, December 2019. <www.atf.gov>

Page 24: “For the purposes of the National Firearms Act the term Machinegun means … [a]ny weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger.”

[387] Report: “Guns Used in Crime.” By Marianne W. Zawitz. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, July 1995. <bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov>

Page 2: “Automatic weapons are considered machineguns subject to the provisions of the National Firearms Act.”

[388] Public Law 99-308: “Firearm Owners’ Protection Act.” 99th U.S. Congress (1985–1986). Signed into law by Ronald Reagan on May 19, 1986. <www.congress.gov>

Section 1. Short Title and Congressional Findings.

(a) Short Title.—This Act may be cited as the “Firearms Owners’ Protection Act”.

(b) Congressional Findings.—The Congress finds that—

(1) the rights of citizens—

(A) to keep and bear arms under the second amendment to the United States Constitution;

(B) to security against illegal and unreasonable searches and seizures under the fourth amendment;

(C) against uncompensated taking of property, double jeopardy, and assurance of due process of law under the fifth amendment; and

(D) against unconstitutional exercise of authority under the ninth and tenth amendments; require additional legislation to correct existing firearms statutes and enforcement policies; and

(2) additional legislation is required to reaffirm the intent of the Congress, as expressed in section 101 of the Gun Control Act of 1968, that “it is not the purpose of this title to place any undue or unnecessary Federal restrictions or burdens on law-abiding citizens with respect to the acquisition, possession, or use of firearms appropriate to the purpose of hunting, trapshooting, target shooting, personal protection, or any other lawful activity, and that this title is not intended to discourage or eliminate the private ownership or use of firearms by law-abiding citizens for lawful purposes.”

Sec. 101. Amendments to Section 921.

Section 921 of title 18, United States Code, is amended— …

(23) The term “machinegun” has the meaning given such term in section 58450)) of the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. 5845(b)). …

Sec. 102. Amendments to Section 922.

Section 922 of title 18, United States Code, is amended— …

(o)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), it shall be unlawful for any person to transfer or possess a machinegun.

(2) This subsection does not apply with respect to—

(A) a transfer to or by, or possession by or under the authority of, the United States or any department or agency thereof or a State, or a department, agency, or political subdivision thereof; or

(B) any lawful transfer or lawful possession of a machinegun that was lawfully possessed before the date this subsection takes effect. …

Sec. 109. Amendment of National Firearms Act.

(a) Section 58450)) of the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. 5845(b)) is amended by striking out “any combination of parts designed and intended for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun,” and inserting in lieu thereof “any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun. …

Sec. 110. Effective Date

(c) Machinegun Prohibition.—Section 102(9) shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act.

[389]  U.S. Code Title 26, Subtitle E, Chapter 53, Section 5845: “Definitions.” Accessed June 6, 2022 at <www.law.cornell.edu>

(b) Machinegun

The term “machinegun” means any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger. The term shall also include the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun, and any combination of parts from which a machinegun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person.

[390] Chart constructed with data from:

a) Paper: “Patterns and Prevalence of Lethal Mass Violence.” By Grant Duwe. Criminology & Public Policy, December 16, 2019. Pages 17–35. <onlinelibrary.wiley.com>

Pages 25–26: “Table 1: Trends in the Prevalence and Severity of Mass Shootings, 1976–2018.”

b) Dataset: “Table 7.1. Selected Per Capita Product and Income Series in Current and Chained Dollars.” U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis. Last revised January 30, 2020. <www.bea.gov>

Line 18: “Population (Midperiod, Thousands)”

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data is available upon request.

[391] Report: “Mass Murder with Firearms: Incidents and Victims, 1999–2013.” By William J. Krouse and Daniel J. Richardson. Congressional Research Service, July 30, 2015. <fas.org>

Page 13:

In summary, those 21 mass shootings annually on average fall into the following broad patterns:

• four (4.4) were “mass public shootings” …

• eight (8.5) mass shootings were “familicides” …

• eight (8.3) mass shootings could be characterized as “other felony mass murders” …

NOTE: Just Facts uses the terms Indiscriminate, Familial, and Concomitant instead of Public mass, Familicide, and Other “felony,” respectively, to describe the different types of mass shootings.

[392] Report: “Mass Murder with Firearms: Incidents and Victims, 1999–2013.” By William J. Krouse and Daniel J. Richardson. Congressional Research Service, July 30, 2015. <fas.org>

Page 2: “[T]he United States has seen about 8.5 familicide mass shootings per year on average, in which offenders typically murdered their domestic partners and children in private residences or secluded, sparsely populated settings….”

NOTE: Just Facts uses the phrase “familial mass shooting” instead of “familicide mass shooting.”

[393] Book: Mass Murder in the United States: A History. By Grant Duwe. McFarland & Company, Incorporated, October 16, 2014.

Page 1: “The most common form of mass murder involves a man who kills his wife and children, often in the privacy of their own home.”

[394] Report: “Mass Murder with Firearms: Incidents and Victims, 1999–2013.” By William J. Krouse and Daniel J. Richardson. Congressional Research Service, July 30, 2015. <fas.org>

Page 2: “[T]he United States has seen about … 8.3 other felony mass shootings per year on average, in which offenders committed murders as part of some other underlying criminal activity (robbery, insurance fraud, or criminal competition) or commonplace circumstance (argument).”

NOTE: Just Facts uses the phrase “concomitant” instead of “other felony” because the word concomitant more specifically describes the nature of the shooting.

[395] Report: “Mass Murder with Firearms: Incidents and Victims, 1999–2013.” By William J. Krouse and Daniel J. Richardson. Congressional Research Service, July 30, 2015. <fas.org>

Page 2 (of PDF): “Similarly, a ‘mass public shooting’ is defined to mean a multiple homicide incident in which four or more victims are murdered with firearms, within one event, in at least one or more public locations, such as, a workplace, school, restaurant, house of worship, neighborhood, or other public setting.”

Page 10:

“[M]ass public shooting” means a multiple homicide incident in which four or more victims are murdered with firearms—not including the offender(s)—within one event, and at least some of the murders occurred in a public location or locations in close geographical proximity (such as, a workplace, school, restaurant, or other public settings), and the murders are not attributable to any other underlying criminal activity or commonplace circumstance (armed robbery, criminal competition, insurance fraud, argument, or romantic triangle)

NOTE: Just Facts uses the phrase “indiscriminate mass shooting” instead of “mass public shooting.”

[396] Book: Mass Murder in the United States: A History. By Grant Duwe. McFarland & Company, Incorporated, October 16, 2014.

Page 27:

Mass Public Shootings

The mass murders that often capture the public’s imagination are those in which an offender publicly guns down victims for no apparent rhyme or reason. Of the 250 incidents that took place in a public location from 1900 through 1999, 191 involved offenders who used firearms. Excluding those that occurred in connection with criminal activity such as robbery, drug dealing, and organized crime, there were 116 mass public shootings during the twentieth century.

[397] Calculated with data from:

a) Report: “Mass Murder with Firearms: Incidents and Victims, 1999–2013.” By William J. Krouse and Daniel J. Richardson. Congressional Research Service, July 30, 2015. <fas.org>

Page 46: “Table B-5. Patterns of Mass Shootings and Associated Casualty Rates by Incident and Offender(s), 1999–2013.”

b) Report: “2018 Crime in the United States.” Federal Bureau of Investigation, Criminal Justice Information Services, September 2019.

<ucr.fbi.gov>

“Table 1: Crime in the United States by Volume and Rate Per 100,000 Inhabitants, 1999–2018.” <ucr.fbi.gov>

NOTES:

  • Just Facts uses the terms Indiscriminate, Familial, and Concomitant instead of Public, Familicide, and Other “Felony,” respectively, to describe the different types of mass shootings.
  • An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[398] Dataset: “Intentional Homicides (Per 100,000 People).” World Bank, December 16, 2021. Accessed December 29, 2021 at <data.worldbank.org>

“The intentional killing of a human being by another is the ultimate crime. Its indisputable physical consequences manifested in the form of a dead body also make it the most categorical and calculable.”

[399] Report: “Mass Murder with Firearms: Incidents and Victims, 1999–2013.” By William J. Krouse and Daniel J. Richardson. Congressional Research Service, July 30, 2015. <fas.org>

Pages 2–3 (of PDF): “As discussed in this report, statute, media outlets, gun control and rights advocates, law enforcement agencies, and researchers often adopt different definitions of ‘mass killing,’ ‘mass murder,’ and ‘mass shooting,’ contributing to a welter of claims and counter-claims about the prevalence and deadliness of mass shootings.”

[400] Paper: “Patterns and Prevalence of Lethal Mass Violence.” By Grant Duwe. Criminology & Public Policy, December 16, 2019. Pages 17–35. <onlinelibrary.wiley.com>

Page 18: “In part as a result of the surplus of terms that have been used to describe mass violence, there has been, as Fox and Levin (2015) have pointed out, ‘mass confusion’ over the phrase ‘mass shooting.’ It is therefore important, at the outset, to clarify the meaning of terms such as ‘mass murder,’ ‘mass shooting,’ or ‘mass public shooting.’

[401] Report: “Mass Casualty Shootings.” U.S. Department of Justice, National Center for Victims of Crime, 2018. <ovc.ncjrs.gov>

Pages 1–2 (of PDF):

The decision to include gang- or drug-related incidents, the accidental discharge of a firearm, or family- and intimate partner-related shootings further complicates the definition of a mass shooting. Mother Jones, the FBI, CRS [Congressional Research Service], the MSA [Mass Shootings in America], and Congress do not include these incidents in their definitions, while USA Today does.1

How mass shootings are defined greatly influences the number tracked. For example, USA Today recorded more than 350 mass shootings between 2006 and 2017, while Mother Jones has recorded 95 since 1982.

[402] Webpage: “What is a Mass Shooting?” The Violence Project. Accessed April 20, 2022 at <www.theviolenceproject.org>

There is no universally accepted definition of a mass shooting. We follow the Congressional Research Service definition, which is quite conservative:

“a multiple homicide incident in which four or more victims are murdered with firearms—not including the offender(s)—within one event, and at least some of the murders occurred in a public location or locations in close geographical proximity (e.g., a workplace, school, restaurant, or other public settings), and the murders are not attributable to any other underlying criminal activity or commonplace circumstance (armed robbery, criminal competition, insurance fraud, argument, or romantic triangle).”

By focusing only on public events, we exclude domestic mass shootings (if 50% or more of victims are non-relatives killed in public then we include them). We also exclude mass shootings attributable to gangs or underlying criminal activity (such as, a robbery or drug deal gone bad). A broader definition with a threshold of fewer deaths, non-fatal shootings, or any means or motive would certainly yield more cases.

NOTES:

  • The quoted definition is the Congressional Research Service’s definition of “mass public shooting,” which is used by the Violence Project to define “mass shooting.”
  • Full dataset sent from the Violence Project to Just Facts on March 15, 2022.
  • An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[403] Report: “All Mass Shootings.” Everytown for Gun Safety, November 21, 2020. Last updated 6/4/21. <everytownresearch.org>

“Everytown defines a mass shooting as any incident in which four or more people are shot and killed, excluding the shooter.”

NOTES:

  • Full dataset downloaded by Just Facts from Everytown’s website on April 20, 2022.
  • An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[404] Webpage: “General Methodology.” Gun Violence Archive. Accessed July 14, 2020 at <www.gunviolencearchive.org>

GVA [Gun Violence Archive] uses a purely statistical threshold to define mass shooting based ONLY on the numeric value of 4 or more shot or killed, not including the shooter. GVA does not parse the definition to remove any subcategory of shooting. To that end we don’t exclude, set apart, caveat, or differentiate victims based upon the circumstances in which they were shot. GVA believes that equal importance is given to the counting of those injured as well as killed in a mass shooting incident.

NOTES:

  • Full dataset downloaded by Just Facts from Gun Violence Archive’s website on May 9, 2022.
  • An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[405] Article: “There Were More Mass Shootings Than Days in 2019.” By Jason Silverstein. CBS News, July 31, 2019. Updated 1/2/2020. <www.cbsnews.com>

There were more mass shootings across the U.S. in 2019 than there were days in the year….

By the end of 2019, there were 417 mass shootings in the U.S., according to data from the nonprofit Gun Violence Archive (GVA), which tracks every mass shooting in the country. Thirty-one of those shootings were mass murders. …

The toll of 417 mass shootings includes several high-profile, mass casualty attacks, some of which happened within 24 hours of each other….

[406] Press release: “Pelosi Sends Letter to Speaker Ryan Calling for Immediate Creation of Select Committee on Gun Violence, Passage of King–Thompson Background Check Legislation.” Nancy Pelosi, October 2, 2017. <pelosi.house.gov>

“Today, our nation woke up to news of the worst mass shooting in our history, claiming the lives of at least 58 innocent men and women in Las Vegas. Nearly 12,000 Americans have been killed by guns in 273 mass shootings in 2017—one for each day of the year. On average, more than 90 Americans lose their lives to gun violence every day, a daily toll of heartbreak and tragedy in communities across America.”

[407] Webpage: “After Sandy Hook, We Said Never Again. and Then We Let 2,654 Mass Shootings Happen.” By German Lopez and Kavya Sukumar. Updated July 21, 2020. <www.vox.com>

After Sandy Hook, we said never again. And then we let 2,654 mass shootings happen. …

Mass shooting data comes from the Gun Violence Archive [GVA], which defines mass shootings as events in which four or more people, excluding the shooter, were shot but not necessarily killed at the same general time and location. GVA’s definition differs from other definitions of mass shootings, which may require that four or more people are killed or exclude certain shootings, such as gang-related and domestic events.

[408] Report: “A Study of Active Shooter Incidents in the United States Between 2000 and 2013.” By J. Pete Blair and Katherine W. Schweit. U.S. Department of Justice, September 16, 2013. <www.fbi.gov>

Page 39:

Sandy Hook Elementary School and Residence (Education) On December 14, 2012, at 9:30 a.m., Adam Lanza, 20, armed with two handguns and a rifle, shot through the secured front door to enter Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. He killed 20 students and six adults, and wounded two adults inside the school. Prior to the shooting, the shooter killed his mother at their home. In total, 27 people were killed; two were wounded. The shooter committed suicide after police arrived.

[409] Webpage: “After Sandy Hook, We Said Never Again. and Then We Let 2,654 Mass Shootings Happen.” By German Lopez and Kavya Sukumar. Updated July 21, 2020. <www.vox.com>

“Mass shooting data comes from the Gun Violence Archive [GVA], which defines mass shootings as events in which four or more people, excluding the shooter, were shot but not necessarily killed at the same general time and location. GVA’s definition differs from other definitions of mass shootings, which may require that four or more people are killed or exclude certain shootings, such as gang-related and domestic events.”

[410] Calculated with data from:

a) Dataset: “Mass Shootings, 2013.” Gun Violence Archive. Accessed August 14, 2020 at <www.gunviolencearchive.org>

b) Dataset: “Mass Shootings, 2014.” Gun Violence Archive. Accessed August 14, 2020 at <www.gunviolencearchive.org>

c) Dataset: “Mass Shootings, 2015.” Gun Violence Archive. Accessed August 14, 2020 at <www.gunviolencearchive.org>

d) Dataset: “Mass Shootings, 2016.” Gun Violence Archive. Accessed August 14, 2020 at <www.gunviolencearchive.org>

e) Dataset: “Mass Shootings, 2017.” Gun Violence Archive. Accessed August 14, 2020 at <www.gunviolencearchive.org>

f) Dataset: “Mass Shootings, 2018.” Gun Violence Archive. Accessed August 14, 2020 at <www.gunviolencearchive.org>

g) Dataset: “Mass Shootings, 2019.” Gun Violence Archive. Accessed August 14, 2020 at <www.gunviolencearchive.org>

h) Dataset: “Mass Shootings, 2020.” Gun Violence Archive. Accessed August 14, 2020 at <www.gunviolencearchive.org>

NOTES:

  • This data was downloaded August 14, 2020. At that time, Vox’s “Mass Shootings” page was last updated on July 21, 2020. In order to derive the amount of zero- and one-death incidents (included in Vox’s claim of 2,654 mass shootings), Just Facts omitted incidents that occurred later than July 21, 2020.
  • An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[411] Paper: “Patterns and Prevalence of Lethal Mass Violence.” By Grant Duwe. Criminology & Public Policy, December 16, 2019. Pages 17–35. <onlinelibrary.wiley.com>

Page 30:

Like those who commit familicide, mass public shooters almost always act alone. Mass public shootings, like the ones committed at Columbine and San Bernardino, are rare. Of the 158 cases, 153 (97%) were carried out by a lone offender…. Although not all mass public shooters have a history of mental illness, a little more than 60% of the mass public shooters had been either diagnosed with a mental disorder or demonstrated signs of serious mental illness prior to the attack.

Page 31: “Table 3: Description of mass public shootings, 1976–2018 … Mental Health/Illness … Yes [=] 97, 61.4% … Paranoid Schizophrenia [=] 55, 34.8% … Mood Disorder (Depression) [=] 34, 21.5% … Other Mental Illness [=] 8, 5.1% … Unknown [=] 61, 38.6%”

[412] Calculated with data from the paper: “Domestic Mass Shooters: The Association With Unmedicated and Untreated Psychiatric Illness.” By Ira D. Glick and others. Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology, July 2021. Pages 366–369. <journals.lww.com>

Page 366:

Background: Given the relative lack of psychiatric information and data on the perpetrators of US mass shootings, the aim of our study was to understand who these “mass shooters” were and whether they had a psychiatric illness. If so, were they competently diagnosed, and if so, were they treated with appropriate medication for their diagnoses before the violence?

Methods: Because a prospective study of diagnosis and treatment could not, for obvious reasons, be carried out, we designed a retrospective, observational study of mass shooters, defined as those who killed 4 or more people with firearms between 1982 and 2012 or who killed 3 or more people with firearms between 2013 and 2019 in the United States. We used the Mother Jones database—a database of 115 persons identified as committing a mass shooting in the United States between January 1982 and September 2019. In the vast majority of the incidents identified in the database, the perpetrator died either during or shortly after the crime, leaving little reliable information about their history—especially psychiatric history. We focused on the 35 mass shooters who survived and for which legal proceedings were instituted because these cases presented the most reliable psychiatric information. For each of these 35 mass shootings, we interviewed forensic psychiatrists and forensic psychologists who examined the perpetrator after the crime and/or collected the testimony and reports by psychiatrist(s) at trial or in the postconviction proceedings contained in the court record. In addition, we reviewed available information from the court proceedings, public records, a videotaped interview of assailant by law enforcement, social media postings of the assailant, and writings of the assailant. After collecting the clinical information from multiple sources on each case to make a Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition, diagnosis, we also completed a Sheehan Diagnostic Scale. …

Results: Twenty-eight of 35 cases in which the assailant survived had a psychiatric diagnosis—18 with schizophrenia, 3 with bipolar I disorders, 2 with delusional disorders, persecutory type, 2 with personality disorders (1 paranoid and 1 borderline), 2 with substance-related disorders without other psychiatric diagnoses, and 1 with posttraumatic stress disorder. Four had no psychiatric diagnosis, and in 3, we did not have enough information to make a diagnosis.

Conclusions: A significant proportion of mass shooters experienced unmedicated and untreated psychiatric disorder.

Page 369: “[O]ur data suggest that persons who commit domestic mass murders may experience compromising and untreated psychiatric illness.”

CALCULATIONS:

  • 18 schizophrenia / 35 cases = 51%
  • 3 bipolar I disorders / 35 cases = 9%
  • 2 delusional disorders / 35 cases = 6%
  • 2 personality disorders / 35 cases = 6%
  • 2 substance-related disorders / 35 cases = 6%
  • 1 posttraumatic stress disorder / 35 cases = 3%

[413] Webpage: “Schizophrenia.” National Institute of Mental Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Accessed February 11, 2022 at <www.nimh.nih.gov>

Precise prevalence estimates of schizophrenia are difficult to obtain due to clinical and methodological factors such as the complexity of schizophrenia diagnosis, its overlap with other disorders, and varying methods for determining diagnoses. Given these complexities, schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders are often combined in prevalence estimation studies. A summary of currently available data is presented here.

• Across studies that use household-based survey samples, clinical diagnostic interviews, and medical records, estimates of the prevalence of schizophrenia and related psychotic disorders in the U.S. range between 0.25% and 0.64%.3,4,5

• Estimates of the international prevalence of schizophrenia among non-institutionalized persons is 0.33% to 0.75%.6,7

[414] Report: “Key Substance Use and Mental Health Indicators in the United States: Results From the 2020 National Survey on Drug Use and Health.” Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, October 2021. <www.samhsa.gov>

Page 3: “Among adults aged 18 or older in 2020, 21.0 percent (or 52.9 million people) had any mental illness (AMI) and 5.6 percent (or 14.2 million people) had serious mental illness (SMI) in the past year.”

Page 7:

Survey Background

NSDUH [The National Survey on Drug Use and Health] is an annual survey sponsored by SAMHSA [Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration] within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). NSDUH covers residents of households and people in noninstitutional group settings (e.g., shelters, boarding houses, college dormitories, migratory workers’ camps, halfway houses). The survey excludes people with no fixed address (e.g., people who are homeless and not in shelters), military personnel on active duty, and residents of institutional group settings, such as jails, nursing homes, mental health institutions, and long-term care hospitals.

Data Collection in the First Quarter of 2020

NSDUH employs a stratified multistage area probability sample designed to be representative of both the nation as a whole and for each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The 2020 NSDUH target sample of 67,500 people was allocated across three age groups, with 25 percent allocated to adolescents aged 12 to 17, 25 percent allocated to young adults aged 18 to 25, and 50 percent allocated to adults aged 26 or older.6

Page 32:

The 2020 NSDUH provided estimates of any mental illness (AMI) and serious mental illness (SMI) for adults aged 18 or older. Adults aged 18 or older were classified as having AMI if they had any mental, behavioral, or emotional disorder in the past year of sufficient duration to meet DSM-IV criteria (excluding developmental disorders and SUDs).18,79 Adults who were classified as having AMI were classified as having SMI if they had any mental, behavioral, or emotional disorder that substantially interfered with or limited one or more major life activities. Statistical prediction models that were developed using clinical interview data from a subset of NSDUH adult respondents in 2008 to 2012 were used to classify whether respondents in the 2008 to 2020 adult samples had AMI or SMI in the past year.80

[415] Paper: “Patterns and Prevalence of Lethal Mass Violence.” By Grant Duwe. Criminology & Public Policy, December 16, 2019. Pages 17–35. <onlinelibrary.wiley.com>

Page 32:

Given that mass public shooters are often suicidal, the recent rise in the incidence of these cases follows a broader trend of growth in the suicide rate in the United States. After bottoming out with a rate (per 100,000) of 10.4 in 2000, the rate climbed to 14.0 in 2017, with much of the growth taking place since the late 2000s (Hedegaard, Curtin, & Warner, 2017). The rate (57%) at which mass public shooters commit suicide or force others—usually the police—to kill them at the scene of the attack also dovetails with the high rate of mental disorders (61%) discussed earlier. The findings reported in the literature have consistently demonstrated an association between mental disorders and suicide (Arsenault-Lapierre, Kim, & Turecki, 2004). Even though mental illness is not a cause of suicide, it is widely recognized as a risk factor. Therefore, the same may be true for mass public shootings—a mental disorder may not have a causal relationship with this specific form of mass violence, but it could elevate the risk.

[416] “Suicide by Cop: Protocol and Training Guide.” Police Executive Research Forum, October 2019. <www.policeforum.org>

Page 1 (of PDF): “This Protocol and Training Guide is a tool for police officers to recognize and respond safely to incidents in which a person decides to attempt to die at the hands of a police officer. These encounters are called ‘Suicide by Cop’ (SbC) incidents.”

[417] Book: Out of the Shadows: Confronting America’s Mental Illness Crisis. By E. Fuller Torrey, M.D. John Wiley & Sons, 1997. <www.pbs.org>

Deinstitutionalization is the name given to the policy of moving severely mentally ill people out of large state institutions and then closing part or all of those institutions; it has been a major contributing factor to the mental illness crisis. …

Deinstitutionalization began in 1955 with the widespread introduction of chlorpromazine, commonly known as Thorazine, the first effective antipsychotic medication, and received a major impetus 10 years later with the enactment of federal Medicaid and Medicare. …

[418] Book: Encyclopedia of Mental Health (2nd edition). Edited by Howard S. Friedman. Academic Press, September 17, 2015. Article: “Mental Institutions: Legal Issues and Commitments.” By L.E. Weinberger and E. Markowitz.” Pages 123–126.

The number of involuntary commitments has decreased substantially in the past few decades. In 1955, out of a total population of 165 million, 559,000 individuals with mental illness occupied state and county hospital beds in the United States (339 beds per 100,000 population). By 2010, when the US population grew to approximately 309 million persons, the number of individuals hospitalized dropped to approximately 43,000 (14 beds per 100,000 population), a rate similar to that in 1850 (Torrey and others, 2012). These low numbers reflecting “deinstitutionalization” may have been influenced by several factors. Among them were the legal guidelines imposed on civil commitment and the granting of due process rights to those with mental impairment, the development of antipsychotic and antidepressant medications allowing for treatment in less restrictive settings, and the medical professions’ self-criticism toward treating involuntary patients. In the 1960s, federal programs such as SSI [Supplemental Security Income], SSDI [Social Security Disability Insurance], Medicaid, and Medicare provided federal funds for individuals with mental illness who were living in the community (Harcourt, 2011).

[419] Calculated with data from:

a) Book: Encyclopedia of Mental Health (2nd edition). Edited by Howard S. Friedman. Academic Press, September 17, 2015. Article: “Mental Institutions: Legal Issues and Commitments.” By L.E. Weinberger and E. Markowitz.” Pages 123–126.

b) Book: Out of the Shadows: Confronting America’s Mental Illness Crisis. By E. Fuller Torrey, M.D. John Wiley & Sons, 1997. <www.pbs.org>

c) Paper: “Institutionalization of Deinstitutionalization: A Cross-National Analysis of Mental Health System Reform.” By Gordon C. Shen and Lonnie R. Snowden. International Journal of Mental Health Systems, November 22, 2014. <ijmhs.biomedcentral.com>

Page 17: “Documented rates of psychiatric beds found in general hospitals are the closest proxy of community-based services in this study.”

d) Dataset: “Hospital Beds: Psychiatric Care, Per 1,000 Inhabitants, 2017.” Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Accessed February 11, 2002 at <www.oecd-ilibrary.org>

e) Dataset: “Table 7.1. Selected Per Capita Product and Income Series in Current and Chained Dollars.” U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis. Last revised January 27, 2022. <www.bea.gov>

Line 18: “Population (Midperiod, Thousands)”

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[420] Book: Out of the Shadows: Confronting America’s Mental Illness Crisis. By E. Fuller Torrey, M.D. John Wiley & Sons, 1997. <www.pbs.org>

The magnitude of deinstitutionalization of the severely mentally ill qualifies it as one of the largest social experiments in American history. In 1955, there were 558,239 severely mentally ill patients in the nation’s public psychiatric hospitals. In 1994, this number had been reduced by 486,620 patients, to 71,619, as seen in Figure 1.2. It is important to note, however, that the census of 558,239 patients in public psychiatric hospitals in 1955 was in relationship to the nation’s total population at the time, which was 164 million.

By 1994, the nation’s population had increased to 260 million. If there had been the same proportion of patients per population in public mental hospitals in 1994 as there had been in 1955, the patients would have totaled 885,010. The true magnitude of deinstitutionalization, then, is the difference between 885,010 and 71,619. In effect, approximately 92 percent of the people who would have been living in public psychiatric hospitals in 1955 were not living there in 1994. Even allowing for the approximately 40,000 patients who occupied psychiatric beds in general hospitals or the approximately 10,000 patients who occupied psychiatric beds in community mental health centers (CMHCs) on any given day in 1994, that still means that approximately 763,391 severely mentally ill people (over three-quarters of a million) are living in the community today who would have been hospitalized 40 years ago. That number is more than the population of Baltimore or San Francisco.

[421] Chart constructed with data from:

a) Book: Mass Murder in the United States: A History. By Grant Duwe. McFarland & Company, Incorporated, October 16, 2014.

b) Paper: “Patterns and Prevalence of Lethal Mass Violence.” By Grant Duwe. Criminology & Public Policy, December 16, 2019. Pages 17–35. <onlinelibrary.wiley.com>

NOTES:

  • Just Facts uses the phrase “indiscriminate mass shooting” instead of “mass public shooting.”
  • An Excel file containing the data is available upon request.

[422] Paper: “Institutionalization of Deinstitutionalization: A Cross-National Analysis of Mental Health System Reform.” By Gordon C. Shen and Lonnie R. Snowden. International Journal of Mental Health Systems, 2014. <ijmhs.biomedcentral.com>

Page 17: “Documented rates of psychiatric beds found in general hospitals are the closest proxy of community-based services in this study.”

[423] Dataset: “Hospital Beds: Psychiatric Care, Per 1,000 Inhabitants, 2018.” Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Accessed February 11, 2022 <data.oecd.org>

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data is available upon request.

[424] Book: Beyond Economic Growth: An Introduction to Sustainable Development (2nd edition). By Tatyana P. Soubbotina. World Bank, 2004. <documents1.worldbank.org>

Pages 132–133:

Developed Countries (Industrial Countries, Industrially Advanced Countries). High-income countries, in which most people have a high standard of living. Sometimes also defined as countries with a large stock of physical capital, in which most people undertake highly specialized activities. … Depending on who defines them, developed countries may also include middle-income countries with transition economies, because these countries are highly industrialized. Developed countries contain about 15 percent of the world’s population. They are also sometimes referred to as “the North.”

Page 141:

Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). An organization that coordinates policy mostly among developed countries. OECD member countries exchange economic data and create unified policies to maximize their countries’ economic growth and help nonmember countries develop more rapidly. The OECD arose from the Organisation for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC), which was created in 1948 to administer the Marshall Plan in Europe. In 1960, when the Marshall Plan was completed, Canada, Spain, and the United States joined OEEC members to form the OECD.

[425] Report: “Firearm Use by Offenders.” By Caroline Wolf Harlow. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, November 2001. Revised 2/4/2002. <www.bjs.gov>

Page 15:

A semiautomatic gun is a firearm in which a shell is ejected and the next round of ammunition is loaded automatically from a magazine or clip. The trigger must be pulled for each shot. Semiautomatic guns may be classified as handguns, rifles, or shotguns.

A machine gun is an automatic gun which, if the trigger is held down, will fire rapidly and continuously. It is not a semi-automatic gun for which the trigger must be pulled for each shot. (Classified as fully automatic for analysis.)

[426] Book: Military Technology. By Ron Fridell. Lerner Publications, 2017.

Page 9:

Automatic Weapons

The first muskets and rifles shot one bullet at a time. After each shot, the shooter had to stop to reload. Firing a single-shot weapon took time, skill, and patience. To hit his target, the shooter had to be well trained. Then came firearms that could be loaded with more than one bullet. But they still shot one at a time.

By the late 1800s, soldiers were using automatic rifles and machine guns. These guns could fire many bullets with a single pull of the trigger. A machine gunner’s weapon fired hundreds of bullets each minute. He could point the weapon in the general direction of his enemy and fire. Even poorly-trained shooters could hit their targets. Automatic weapons made war a far more deadly business.

For modern soldiers, the most common military weapon is the AK-47 assault rifle. The AK-47 is not a very accurate weapon. It shakes and rattles when fired. But it can unleash about 700 shots per minute. As many as 100 million of these inexpensive rifles are in use in conflicts around the world. …

The AK-47 is very reliable and is easy to buy. For this reason, it is the weapon of choice for most terrorists. Osama bin Laden, head of the al-Qaeda terrorist group, has called the AK-47 the terrorist’s most important weapon.

[427] Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law 2011. Edited by David Minthorn and others. Basic Books, 2011.

Page 295:

assault weapon: A semi-automatic firearm similar in appearance to a fully automatic firearm or military weapon. Not synonymous with assault rifle, which can be used in fully automatic mode. Wherever possible, be specific about the type of weapon: semi-automatic rifle, semi-automatic shotgun or semi-automatic pistol.

assault rifle: A rifle that is capable of being fired in fully automatic and semi-automatic modes, at the user’s option. Designed for, and used by, military forces. Also used by some law enforcement agencies. The form: an M16 assault rifle, an AK-47 assault rifle.

[428] Public Law 103-322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title XI—Firearms

Subtitle A—Assault Weapons … This subtitle may be cited as the “Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act”.

Sec. 110102. Restriction on Manufacture, Transfer, and Possession of Certain Semiautomatic Assault Weapons.

(a) Restriction.—Section 922 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection: (v)(l) It shall be unlawful for a person to manufacture, transfer, or possess a semiautomatic assault weapon. …

(b) DEFINITION OF SEMIAUTOMATIC ASSAULT WEAPON.—Section 921(a) of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

(30) The term ‘semiautomatic assault weapon’ means—

(A) any of the firearms, or copies or duplicates of the firearms in any caliber, known as—

(i) Norinco, Mitchell, and Poly Technologies Avtomat Kalashnikovs (all models);

(ii) Action Arms Israeli Military Industries UZI and Galil;

(iii) Beretta Ar70 (SC-70);

(iv) ColtAR-15;

(v) Fabrique National FN/FAL, FN/LAR, and FNC;

(vi) SWD M-10, M-11, M-11/9, and M-12;

(vii) SteyrAUG;

(viii) INTRATEC TEC-9, TEC-DC9 and TEC-22; and

(ix) revolving cylinder shotguns, such as (or similar to) the Street Sweeper and Striker 12;

(B) a semiautomatic rifle that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of—

(i) a folding or telescoping stock;

(ii) a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon;

(iii) a bayonet mount;

(iv) a flash suppressor or threaded barrel designed to accommodate a flash suppressor; and

(v) a grenade launcher;

(C) a semiautomatic pistol that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of—

(i) an ammunition magazine that attaches to the pistol outside of the pistol grip;

(ii) a threaded barrel capable of accepting a barrel extender, flash suppressor, forward handgrip, or silencer;

(iii) a shroud that is attached to, or partially or completely encircles, the barrel and that permits the shooter to hold the firearm with the nontrigger hand without being burned;

(iv) a manufactured weight of 50 ounces or more when the pistol is unloaded; and

(v) a semiautomatic version of an automatic firearm; and

(D) a semiautomatic shotgun that has at least 2 of—

(i) a folding or telescoping stock;

(ii) a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon;

(iii) a fixed magazine capacity in excess of 5 rounds; and

(iv) an ability to accept a detachable magazine. …

Sec. 110103. Ban of Large Capacity Ammunition Feeding Devices.

(a) Prohibition.—Section 922 of title 18, United States Code, as amended by section 110102(a), is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:

(w)(l) Except as provided in paragraph (2), it shall be unlawful for a person to transfer or possess a large capacity ammunition feeding device. …

(b) Definition of Large Capacity Ammunition Feeding Device.—Section 921(a) of title 18, United States Code, as amended by section 110102(b), is amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

(31) The term “large capacity ammunition feeding device”—

(A) means a magazine, belt, drum, feed strip, or similar device manufactured after the date of enactment of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 that has a capacity of, or that can be readily restored or converted to accept, more than 10 rounds of ammunition; but

(B) does not include an attached tubular device designed to accept, and capable of operating only with, .22 caliber rimfire ammunition. …

Sec. 110105. Effective Date

This subtitle and the amendments made by this subtitle—

(1) shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act; and

(2) are repealed effective as of the date that is 10 years after that date.

[429] Public Law 103-322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title XI—Firearms

Subtitle A—Assault Weapons … This subtitle may be cited as the “Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act”. …

Sec. 110104. Study by Attorney General

(a) Study.—The Attorney General shall investigate and study the effect of this subtitle and the amendments made by this subtitle, and in particular shall determine their impact, if any, on violent and drug trafficking crime. The study shall be conducted over a period of 18 months, commencing 12 months after the date of enactment of this Act.

(b) Report.—Not later than 30 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Attorney General shall prepare and submit to the Congress a report setting forth in detail the findings and determinations made in the study under subsection (a).

Sec. 110105. Effective Date.

This subtitle and the amendments made by this subtitle—

(1) shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act; and

(2) are repealed effective as of the date that is 10 years after that date.

[430] Article: “How Congress Passed an Assault Weapons Ban in 1994.” By Carl Hulse. New York Times, September 7, 2019. Updated 6/22/2021. <www.nytimes.com>

It was August 1994 and a coalition of House Democrats wary of any new gun restrictions joined Republicans to unexpectedly sink the [Clinton] administration’s big crime bill on a procedural vote that was usually a test of party loyalty.

Afterward, Speaker Thomas S. Foley and his top lieutenants, all Democrats, trooped down to the White House with a message for a shocked president who was already struggling on his signature health care proposal: Drop a divisive ban on assault weapons or the crime bill won’t pass. …

“That’s when we [the Clinton administration] decided to go to the Republicans. At the time, it was novel to try to work with the Republicans.”

With Congress prepared to again clash over gun safety, in the aftermath of a murderous August, the circuitous route to passage taken by the assault weapons ban 25 years ago illustrates just how perfectly the legislative stars must align for contentious gun measures to become law. It also shows what such an effort entails — true bipartisanship, a committed White House, a readiness on all sides to compromise and a willingness by some lawmakers to take a significant political risk.

[431] Calculated with data from:

a) Vote 416: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” U.S. House of Representatives, August 21, 1994. <clerk.house.gov>

b) Vote 295: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” U.S. Senate, August 25, 1994. <www.senate.gov>

Party

Voted “Yes”

Voted “No”

Voted “Present” or Did Not Vote †

Number

Portion

Number

Portion

Number

Portion

Republican

53

24%

167

75%

2

1%

Democrat

242

78%

66

21%

4

1%

Independent

1

100%

0

0%

0

0%

NOTE: † Voting “Present” is effectively the same as not voting.

[432] Public Law 103-322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

[433] Public Law 103-322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title XI—Firearms

Subtitle A—Assault Weapons … This subtitle may be cited as the “Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act”. …

Sec. 110105. Effective Date.

This subtitle and the amendments made by this subtitle—

(1) shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act; and

(2) are repealed effective as of the date that is 10 years after that date.

[434] Paper: “The Impact of the 1994 Federal Assault Weapons Ban on Gun Markets: An Assessment of Short-Term Primary and Secondary Market Effects.” By Christopher S. Koper & Jeffrey A. Roth. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, September 2002. Pages 239–266. <link.springer.com>

Page 239:

The reactions of the gun market, including those of producers, wholesalers, retailers, and consumers, play an important role in shaping the potential impact of gun control policies on gun crime. As a case in point, this paper examines the federal Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, which bans a group of military-style semiautomatic firearms (i.e., assault weapons). Using a variety of national and local data sources, we assess the short-term (1994–1996) impact of the assault weapons ban on gun markets, examining trends in prices and production of the banned weapons in legal markets and assessing the availability of the banned weapons in illicit markets as measured by criminal use. Prices of assault weapons rose substantially around the time of the ban's enactment, reducing the availability of assault weapons to criminal users in the very short run. However, a surge in assault weapon production just before the ban caused prices to fall in the months following the ban. Implications of the findings for assessing this and other gun control policies are discussed.

Page 255:

The price and production analyses support an SDR [speculative demand and response] market model in which manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers reacted to price increases caused by growing speculative demand before the passage of the AW ban. Primary market prices of AWs [assault weapons] rose by upwards of 50%, as gun distributors, dealers, and collectors speculated that legally-owned, grandfathered AWs would become expensive collectors’ items. However, production of the banned weapons also surged in response to the price increase, so that more than an extra year’s supply of grandfathered AWs and modified, legal AW copies were manufactured during 1994. After the ban took effect, primary market prices of the banned guns fell to nearly pre-ban levels and remained there through mid-1996, reflecting both the oversupply of grandfathered guns and the existence of a variety of legal substitutes for the banned weapons (these substitutes include modified, legal AW copies as well as other non-banned semiautomatic firearms). By 1996, therefore, the ban had produced the unintended consequence of making AWs more accessible in the primary market: supply increased and prices fell to pre-1994 levels.

[435] Paper: “Mass Shootings and the Media: Why All Events Are Not Created Equal.” By Jaclyn Schildkraut and others. Journal of Crime and Justice, February 5, 2017. Pages 223–243. <doi.org>

Page 223:

Due to their sensational nature, mass shootings receive a considerable amount of attention in the media. Despite their rarity, not all shootings garner the same coverage. The present study examines characteristics of newsworthiness among 90 shootings between 2000 and 2012. …

The 20 April 1999 rampage at Columbine High School has been categorized as a watershed event (Larkin 2009; Muschert 2002) and, for many news consumers nationwide, helped propel mass shootings as a phenomenon into the national discourse.

[436] Article: “Oregon Gunman on Mass Shooters: ‘When They Spill a Little Blood, the Whole World Knows Who They Are.’ ” By Mark Berman and Caitlin Dewey. Washington Post, October 2, 2015. <www.washingtonpost.com>

While relatively little is known so far about the gunman who shot and killed nine people Thursday at an Oregon community college, the few details that have emerged suggest an angry young man fascinated by mass shooters. …

An account associated with his e-mail address uploaded hundreds of movies and TV shows since April 2013, including the BBC documentary “This World Surviving Sandy Hook,” and films titled “Spree Killers: Columbine Killers” and “Virginia Tech Massacre – Mass School Shooting.”

Earlier this year, after a high-profile shooting in Virginia, this same account posted a message that appears chilling in hindsight.

“On an interesting note, I have noticed that so many people like him are all alone and unknown, yet when they spill a little blood, the whole world knows who they are,” the account posted. “A man who was known by no one, is now known by everyone. His face splashed across every screen, his name across the lips of every person on the planet, all in the course of one day. Seems the more people you kill, the more you’re in the limelight.”

[437] Book: Mass Killers: Inside the Minds of Men Who Murder. By David J. Krajicek. Arcturus Publishing, May 2019.

Just before her attack, [mass shooter Brenda] Spencer told a friend: “Wait until Monday, and see what I’m going to do. It might even be big enough to make the news.” She made the news all right, and her murders were the subject of a 1979 hit song…. Since Spencer’s moment in the media sun, many headline-grabbing killers have predicted their own notoriety. Before he shot and killed a teacher at his Lake Worth, Florida, school in 2000, Nathaniel Brazill, 13, told a classmate, “Watch, I’m going to be all over the news,” and another fame-seeker, Sebastian Bosse, 18, the 2006 German school shooter, bragged to friends: “I’m going to be really big one day…. Everybody will talk about me.” Robert Hawkins, who at 19 killed eight people and himself in a 2007 shopping mall shooting in Omaha, Nebraska, suggested in a suicide note note that media attention was a silver lining of his murders. …

He expressed regrets toward his parents and friends but added: “just think tho, I’m gonna be [expletive deleted] famous.”

Jack Sawyer, a Vermont teenager whose school shooting plans were foiled in 2018 when a friend tipped off the police, kept a journal in which he all but salivated at his expected future glory. “I will be immortal from my actions,” Sawyer wrote. “The mass chaos I’ll create will leave everyone hopeless and distraught and fearful their every next step.” In another case, lust for attention alerted the authorities—and perhaps averted a shooting—when school officials in Mishawaka, Indiana, found a notebook in  a 16-year-old boy’s locker. The teenager had written: “ I wanna break the current shooting record. I wanna get instant recognition.

And during a three-hour standoff following his 2016 assault on an Orlando, Florida, nightclub, Omar Mateen repeatedly check Facebook, to see whether news of his attack had gone viral on social media, After barricading himself in the building where nearly 50 men and women lay dead or dying from his hand, her called a television station and gleefully introduced himself by saying: “It’s me. I’m the shooter.” Jared Loughner, who wounded U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords and killed six others in 2011 in Tucson, Arizona, crowed “I’ll see you on national TV!”

The potential for infamy was central to the planning that Jesse Osborne, a 14-year-old South Carolina boy, put into the 2016 attack that left his father and an unrelated child dead. As usual in these cases, he was shooting for many more victims. “I think I’ll  probably most likely kill around 50 or 60,” he wrote in his journal. “If I get lucky, maybe 150.” He googled terms such as “top 10 mass shooters,” “youngest mass murderer,” and “10 youngest murderers in history.” “I have to beat Adam Laza … at least 40,” Osborne wrote nine days before his attack, misspelling the surname of Lanza, the Sandy Hook killer who took 27 lives.

[438] Public Law 103-322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title II—Prisons

Subtitle A—Violent Offender Incarceration and Truth in Sentencing Incentive Grants

Sec. 20102. Truth in Sentencing Incentive Grants

(a) TRUTH IN SENTENCING GRANT PROGRAM.—Fifty percent of the total amount of funds appropriated to carry out this subtitle for each of fiscal years 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, and 2000 shall be made available for Truth in Sentencing Incentive Grants. To be eligible to receive such a grant, a State must meet the requirements of section 20101(b) and shall demonstrate that the State—

(1) has in effect laws which require that persons convicted of violent crimes serve not less than 85 percent of the sentence imposed; or

(2) since 1993—

(A) has increased the percentage of convicted violent offenders sentenced to prison;

(B) has increased the average prison time which will be served in prison by convicted violent offenders sentenced to prison;

[439] Public Law 103-322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title XI—Firearms

Subtitle A—Assault Weapons … This subtitle may be cited as the “Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act”. …

Sec. 110104. Study by Attorney General

(a) Study.—The Attorney General shall investigate and study the effect of this subtitle and the amendments made by this subtitle, and in particular shall determine their impact, if any, on violent and drug trafficking crime. The study shall be conducted over a period of 18 months, commencing 12 months after the date of enactment of this Act.

(b) Report.—Not later than 30 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Attorney General shall prepare and submit to the Congress a report setting forth in detail the findings and determinations made in the study under subsection (a).

[440] Report: “Impacts of the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban: 1994–96.” By Jeffrey A. Roth and Christopher S. Koper. U.S. Department of Justice, National Institute of Justice, March 1999. <www.ojp.gov>

Page 10:

Gun control policies, and especially gun bans, are highly controversial crime control measures, and the debates tend to be dominated by anecdotes and emotion rather than empirical findings. In the course of this study, the researchers attempted to develop a logical framework for evaluating gun policies, one that considers the workings of gun markets and the variety of outcomes such policies may have. The findings suggest that the relatively modest gun control measures that are politically feasible in this country may affect gun markets in ways that at least temporarily reduce criminals’ access to the regulated guns, with little impact on law-abiding gun owners.

The public safety benefits of the 1994 ban have not yet been demonstrated. This suggests that existing regulations should be complemented by further tests of enforcement tactics that focus on the tiny minorities of gun dealers and owners who are linked to gun violence. These include strategic targeting of problem gun dealers,21 crackdowns on “hot spots” for gun crime,22 and strategic crackdowns on perpetrators of gun violence,23 followed by comprehensive efforts to involve communities in maintaining the safety that these tactics achieve.24 These techniques are still being refined, and none will ever stop all gun violence. However, with dispassionate analyses of their effects and a willingness to modify tactics in response to evidence, these approaches may well prove more immediately effective, and certainly less controversial, than regulatory approaches alone.

[441] Report: “An Updated Assessment of the Federal Assault Weapons Ban: Impacts on Gun Markets and Gun Violence, 1994–2003.” By Christopher S. Koper and others. Jerry Lee Center of Criminology, University of Pennsylvania, June 2004. <www.ncjrs.gov>

Page 96:

[W]e cannot clearly credit the ban with any of the nation’s recent drop in gun violence. And, indeed, there has been no discernible reduction in the lethality and injuriousness of gun violence, based on indicators like the percentage of gun crimes resulting in death or the share of gunfire incidents resulting in injury, as we might have expected had the ban reduced crimes with both AWs [assault weapons] and LCMs [large-capacity magazines].

However, the grandfathering provision of the AW-LCM ban guaranteed that the effects of this law would occur only gradually over time. Those effects are still unfolding and may not be fully felt for several years into the future, particularly if foreign, pre-ban LCMs continue to be imported into the U.S. in large numbers. It is thus premature to make definitive assessments of the ban’s impact on gun violence.

[442] Calculated with data from:

a) Paper: “Patterns and Prevalence of Lethal Mass Violence.” By Grant Duwe. Criminology & Public Policy, December 16, 2019. Pages 17–35. <onlinelibrary.wiley.com>

b) Public Law 103-322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

c) Dataset: “Table 7.1. Selected Per Capita Product and Income Series in Current and Chained Dollars.” U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis. Last revised January 30, 2020. <www.bea.gov>

Line 18: “Population (Midperiod, Thousands)”

NOTE: An Excel file containing the data and calculations is available upon request.

[443] Speech: “Remarks by President Biden on Gun Violence in America.” White House, June 2, 2022. <www.whitehouse.gov>

We should reinstate the assault weapons ban and high-capacity magazines that we passed in 1994 with bipartisan support in Congress and the support of law enforcement.  Nine categories of semi-automatic weapons were included in that ban, like AK-47s and AR-15s.

And in the 10 years it was law, mass shootings went down.  But after Republicans let the law expire in 2004 and those weapons were allowed to be sold again, mass shootings tripled.  Those are the facts.

[444] Article: “Joe Biden Said Mass Shootings Tripled When the Assault Weapon Ban Ended. They Did.” By Jon Greenberg. PolitiFact. May 25, 2022. <www.politifact.com>

“We rate this claim Mostly True.”

[445] Paper: “Changes in US Mass Shooting Deaths Associated with the 1994–2004 Federal Assault Weapons Ban: Analysis of Open-Source Data.” By Charles DiMaggio and others. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, January 2019. Pages 11–19. <journals.lww.com>

[446] Paper: “Changes in US Mass Shooting Deaths Associated with the 1994–2004 Federal Assault Weapons Ban: Analysis of Open-Source Data.” By Charles DiMaggio and others. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, January 2019. Pages 11–19. <journals.lww.com>

Pages 12–13:

Mass incident shooting data were obtained from three independent, well-documented and referenced online sources: Mother Jones Magazine, the Los Angeles Times and Stanford University.16–18 These sources have each been the basis for a number of previous studies.19–26 Data from the three online open-source references were combined. Analyses were restricted to incidents reported by all three sources. Entries were further restricted to those for which four or more fatalities (not including the shooter) were reported, which meets the strictest definition of mass shootings as defined by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.27,28 Yearly homicide data were obtained from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS) an online database of fatal and nonfatal injury.29 Because 2017 data were not yet available in the WISQARS system, data for firearm-related homicide data for that year were obtained from a separate online source.30

[447] Letter: “Re: DiMaggio, C. Et al. ‘Changes in US Mass Shooting Deaths Associated with the 1994–2004 Federal Assault Weapons Ban: Analysis of Open-Source Data.’ ” By Louis Klarevas. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, May 2019. Page 926. <journals.lww.com>

Page 926: “After reviewing the study’s data set, I believe that the authors misidentified the involvement of assault weapons in roughly half of the incidents…. With such a large number of misclassifications, the study’s overarching conclusion about the effect of the AWB [Assault Weapons Ban] is called into question.”

[448] Webpage: “Louis James Klarevas.” Teachers College, Columbia University. Accessed April 14, 2022 at <www.tc.columbia.edu>

Research Professor …

Educational Background

Ph.D. American University

B.A. University of Pennsylvania

Scholarly Interests

Dr. Louis Klarevas is Research Professor at Teachers College, Columbia University, and the author of Rampage Nation: Securing America from Mass Shootings (2016). In the past, he has taught at American University, George Washington University, City University of New York, New York University, and the University of Massachusetts–Boston. He has also held the positions of Defense Analysis Research Fellow at the London School of Economics and Political Science and as United States Senior Fulbright Scholar in Security Studies at the University of Macedonia. One of the leading authorities on mass shootings and school violence in the United States, he has served as an expert witness in cases involving gun violence and firearm laws as well as a consultant to the federal government on security and counter-terrorism issues.

[449] Paper: “Changes in US Mass Shooting Deaths Associated with the 1994–2004 Federal Assault Weapons Ban: Analysis of Open-Source Data.” By Charles DiMaggio and others. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, January 2019. Pages 11–19. <journals.lww.com>

Page 13:

Figure 1. Mass Shooting Deaths. United States 1981–2017.

U.S. Mass Shooting Deaths

[450] Article: “April 3, 1995: A Day of Infamy for Corpus Christi.” By Roslyn Jimenez and Erica Hernandez. KSAT, September 6, 2021. <www.ksat.com>

April 3, 1995 was already a day of mourning for the tight-knit community. It was the day Tejano superstar Selena Quintanilla was laid to rest. Then, just hours later, people would be shocked once again to hear that five people were shot to death at a local refinery.

According to the Corpus Christi Caller-Times, it started when a former employee, 28-year old James Simpson, walked through the front door of the Walter Rossler Co.

Police records state Simpson shot the owner, his wife and three workers before leaving through the back door and shooting himself behind the building.

[451] Article: “Troubled Ex-Employee Slays 5 in Shooting Rampage at Office.” By E.A. Torriero. Orlando Sentinel, February 10, 1996. <www.orlandosentinel.com>

On Friday morning, 14 months to the day of his dismissal, Clifton McCree sought payback, at the same beach where he once cursed sun-bathing tourists, and on the same close-knit co-workers he often threatened to harm.

“I’m going to kill all you (expletive),” he announced, bursting into the tiny city office trailer off Fort Lauderdale beach before sunrise and firing from a quickdraw, black 9 mm semiautomatic.

In seconds, there were five dead.

Police identified the victims as Joseph T. Clifford, 37; Joseph Belotto, 40; Kenneth A. Brunjes, 46; Mark A. Bretz, 36; and Donald L. Moon Jr., 44.

[452] Article: “Orange PD Officers Recall Deadly Caltrans Yard Shooting on 20th Anniversary.” By Lou Ponsi. Behind the Badge, Cornerstone Communications, December 17, 2017. <behindthebadge.com>

“Orange PD [police department] Officer Derek Cook was the first to respond to the scene at the Caltrans yard on Batavia Street, just north of Taft Avenue. … Before it ended, Arturo Reyes Torres, a disgruntled former Caltrans employee who recently had been fired for theft, shot and killed four Caltrans workers and wounded two others.”

[453] Article: “Disgraced Ex-Worker Kills 5 at Engine Plant.” Tammy Webber. Associated Press, February 6, 2001. <products.kitsapsun.com>

“A former factory worker who got caught stealing from his employer forced his way into the suburban Chicago engine plant Monday and opened fire one day before he was to report to prison. He killed five people, including himself, and wounded four others.”

[454] Article: “Westley Harris Sentenced.” Alabama Associated Press, June 17, 2005. <www.wsfa.com>

A jury has recommended life without parole for Westley Devon Harris in the shooting deaths of six members of his girlfriend's family at their Crenshaw County farm. …

The jury made its recommendation two day after convicting Harris, now 25, in the slaughter of then-girlfriend Janice Ball's family. Her grandmother, parents and three teenage brothers were killed at their Rutledge home on August 26th, 2002.

[455] Report: “Assault Weapons, Mass Shootings, and Options for Lawmakers.” By Jaclyn Schildkraut. Rockefeller Institute of Government, March 22, 2019. <rockinst.org>

Page 2:

This analysis defines “mass shooting” as: An incident of targeted violence carried out by one or more shooters at one or more public or populated locations. Multiple victims (both injuries and fatalities) are associated with the attack, and both the victims and location(s) are chosen either at random or for their symbolic value. The event occurs within a single 24-hour period, though most attacks typically last only a few minutes. The motivation of the shooting must not correlate with gang violence or targeted militant or terroristic activity.

Page 4:

Of the 340 mass shootings between 1966 and 2016, at least one handgun was used in 76 percent of events, compared to less than 30 percent of events that involved any rifle, not just those categorized as assault-style.8

Assault-style rifles in particular were present in 67 of the 340 shootings (20 percent). An assault-style weapon was present in 69 percent of cases where at least one rifle was used.9 The remaining shootings involved rifles that had bolt-, lever-, or pump-action firing mechanisms….

Page 6:

In the 67 shootings involving an assault-style rifle, 351 people were killed and another 511 were wounded by gunfire. Comparatively, in 271 shootings where no such rifle was present, 787 fatalities occurred and 869 people were injured.16 On average, there were 5.2 deaths and 7.6 injuries in mass shooting incidents involving an assault-style rifle; in comparison, on average, there were 2.9 deaths and 3.2 injuries per incident where no such rifle was used….

[456] Press release: “Mass Shootings Involving Assault Weapons Kill More People Than Other Weapons.” United States Senator for California Dianne Feinstein, September 20, 2019. <www.feinstein.senate.gov>

“The NRA [National Rifle Association] likes to say guns don’t kill people, people kill people. But guns kill more people than other weapons, and military-style assault weapons are the deadliest and the choice of individuals who want to shoot a large number of people,” Feinstein said.

“The simple fact is that if these high-powered, military-style weapons weren’t so easily available, we’d have fewer massacres, and shootings would be less deadly. No one law will solve this problem, but we have to start taking action now to dry up the supply of assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.”

NRA myth: The NRA [National Rifle Association] says guns don’t kill people, people kill people.

Fact: People kill more people with assault rifles equipped with high-capacity magazines than they kill with other weapons.

• An analysis by the Rockefeller Institute of Government found that mass shootings that involved assault rifles resulted in an average of 5.2 deaths and 7.6 injuries, while mass shootings that didn’t involve assault rifles resulted in an average of 2.9 deaths and 3.2 injuries.

[457] Report: “Assault Weapons, Mass Shootings, and Options for Lawmakers.” By Jaclyn Schildkraut. Rockefeller Institute of Government, March 22, 2019. <rockinst.org>

Page 4:

As demonstrated in our recent report, Can Mass Shootings be Stopped?, a popular misconception about mass shootings is that assault-style rifles are the preferred weapon of choice for mass shooters.7 Over the past 50 years, handguns were used considerably more frequently than rifles. Of the 340 mass shootings between 1966 and 2016, at least one handgun was used in 76 percent of events, compared to less than 30 percent of events that involved any rifle, not just those categorized as assault-style.8

7 Typical conjecture suggests that AR-15s are the preferred weapon of mass shooters because it is incorrectly assumed that the “AR” stands for assault rifle. In reality, it stands for ArmaLite rifle, the company that originally developed the weapon. Moreover, though the popularity of assault-style rifles has grown among mass shooters, particularly in recent years, data still indicate that handguns are more commonly used.

Page 6:

When disaggregating these events based on whether an assault-style rifle was present, a statistically significant difference is found: the presence of these weapons in a mass shooting incident is, on average, correlated with deadlier events. In the 67 shootings involving an assault-style rifle, 351 people were killed and another 511 were wounded by gunfire. Comparatively, in 271 shootings where no such rifle was present, 787 fatalities occurred and 869 people were injured.

[458] Commentary: “Bullets for Gun Control.” By David L. Katz, M.D., Director of the Yale Prevention Research Center. Huff Post, January 8, 2013. Updated 3/10/2013.

<www.huffpost.com>

“Semi-automatic weapons with high-capacity magazines are not for hunting anything but people. They make a helluva mess out of a duck or a deer. … Semi-automatic weapons with high-capacity magazines almost never figure in effective self-defense.”

NOTE: The author of this commentary hyperlinked to Just Facts’ Gun Control Research, which at the time did not have research on the suitability of these weapons for hunting or self-defense.

[459] Article: “The NRA [National Rifle Association] Claims the AR-15 Is Useful for Hunting and Home Defense. Not Exactly.” By Justin Peters. Slate, June 12, 2016. <slate.com>

“It’s odd to cite hunting and home defense as reasons to keep selling a rifle that’s not particularly well suited, and definitely not necessary, for either.”

[460] Article: “Joe Biden’s Tip for Self-Defense: Get a Shotgun.” Reuters, February 20, 2013. <www.chicagotribune.com>

‘I promise you whoever’s coming in is not gonna,’ Biden said. ‘You don’t need an AR-15 (assault rifle). It’s harder to aim. It’s harder to use and in fact you don’t need 30 rounds to protect yourself.’

[461] Article: “The Most Versatile Semi-Automatic Rifles.” By John Haughey and Tyler Freel. Outdoor Life, November 20, 2011 Last updated 4/10/2019. <www.outdoorlife.com>

“Regardless of what you think or how you feel about using semi-automatic guns for hunting, autoloaders and AR-style rifles are becoming more common in [hunting] camps and virtually every major manufacturer is producing these guns in calibers heavy enough to drop deer, hogs and bears.”

[462] Article: “8 Experts Pick Their Home Defense Weapon of Choice.” By Jake Christopher. Ballistic Magazine, August 28, 2015. <www.ballisticmag.com>

Paul Buffoni

Affiliation: Bravo Company USA, Inc. / Prior service USMC [U.S. Marine Corps]

Position: Founder and CEO

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Rifle – BCM RECCE KMR

Top Shot Chris Cheng

Affiliation: Pro Staff for Bass Pro Shops, Leupold and Salient Arms International

Position: The History Channel’s Top Shot Champion

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – Glock 34

Walt Hasser

Affiliation: Armalite

Position: Vice President of Product Management

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – Glock 23

Jordan Hunter

Affiliation: Retired USMC Infantry

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – 9mm Glock 19 with Unity Tactical ATOM Slide

Frank Proctor

Affiliation: Way of the Gun Performance Shooting

Position: Owner/Instructor

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Rifle – AR-15

Nate Stokes

Affiliation: US Army Veteran, Law Enforcement Officer

Position: Police Officer

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Rifle – Daniel Defense Mk18

Rachel VandeVoort

Affiliation: Kimber Manufacturing

Position: Trade Relations Manager

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – Currently the Stainless Ultra TLE II (LG) in .45 ACP, with two extra loaded mags.

Bill Wilson

Affiliation: Wilson Combat

Position: Founder/President

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: N/A- Varies.

[463] Brief submitted to the U.S. Supreme Court: Worman v. Healey. National Association of Chiefs of Police, October 25, 2019. <www.supremecourt.gov>

Page 25:

Following the Sutherland Springs, Texas, church shooting, a citizen retrieved his own AR-15, ran to the scene, and shot the attacker (who later died) as he exited the church.18

18 Jennifer Brett, “He Had an AR-15, but So Did I.” Sutherland Springs Hero Hailed by NRA, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (May 6, 2018), <www.ajc.com>

[464] Article: “ ‘Hero’ Exchanged Fire with Gunman, Then Helped Chase Him Down.” By Saeed Ahmed and others. CNN. Last updated November 7, 2017. <www.cnn.com>

“When Devin Patrick Kelley opened fire inside First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs on Sunday, Stephen Willeford, who lives near the church, grabbed his own gun and ran out of the house barefoot to confront the gunman.”

[465] Article: “The Man Who Took Down the Texas Church Gunman.” By Michael James. USA Today, November 6, 2017. Updated 11/7/2017. <www.usatoday.com>

“Willeford said he had very little time to think Sunday when his daughter told him about the shooting. He loaded his magazine and ran across the street to the church, not even taking the time to put on shoes. When Willeford saw the gunman, he exchanged gunfire.”

[466] Article: “Man Who Exchanged Fire with Texas Shooter: ‘I Was Scared to Death.’ ” By Scott Neuman. NPR, November 7, 2017. <www.npr.org>

“Willeford says his daughter alerted him to what sounded like shots being fired at the nearby First Baptist Church. That is when, he said, he got his rifle out of his safe.”

[467] Article: “2 Texas Locals Reportedly Stopped the Church Mass Shooter From Killing More People.” By Kieran Corcoran. Business Insider, November 6, 2017. <www.businessinsider.com>

“As Kelley was leaving, the police say he was confronted by a local resident who ‘grabbed his rifle and engaged that suspect.’ The DailyMail.com report identified that local as Willeford, a 55-year-old motorcycle enthusiast.”

[468] Article: “Trump: ‘Hundreds More’ Would Have Died In Texas Church With Gun Laws Like Chicago’s.” CBS Chicago, November 7, 2017. <chicago.cbslocal.com>

“If you did what you’re suggesting, there would have been no difference three days ago, and you might not have had that very brave person who happened to have a gun or a rifle in his truck go out and shoot him, and hit him, and neutralize him,” Trump said. …

The president was referring to Stephen Willeford, who ran out of his house barefoot, shot at Devin Kelley, and forced him to flee, after Kelley had killed 26 people and wounded 20 others at First Baptist Church.

[469] Article: “Air Force Error Allowed Texas Gunman to Buy Weapons.” By David Montgomery and others. New York Times, November 6, 2017. <www.nytimes.com>

“After Mr. Kelley stepped out of the church, a man outside was waiting with his own rifle. They fired at each other, and Mr. Kelley was hit twice. He then drove off in his car.”

[470] Article: “Church Shooter’s History Puts a Spotlight on Texas Gun Laws.” By AJ Willingham. CNN. Updated November 7, 2017. <www.cnn.com>

“Kelley used a Ruger AR-556 rifle in his rampage. The AR-556 is a type of AR-15, a military-style rifle.”

[471] Editorial: “The AR-15 Rifle Butchers the Human Body; So Why Is It Legal, Exactly?” By the Editorial Board. USA Today, November 9, 2017. Updated 11/9/2017. <www.usatoday.com>

“The legacy of America’s love affair with military-style rifles was etched into the stricken faces of husband-and-wife paramedic team Mike and Jamie Shaw after they emerged from the bloody Texas sanctuary where gunman Devin Kelley unleashed his firepower on Sunday.”

[472] Interview: “Texas Community Is the Latest to Suffer a Shooting Attack.” By Russell Lewis. NPR, November 6, 2017. <www.npr.org>

“One of the little tidbit that we learned is that he, during this shooting spree 24 hours ago here, he had three guns on him. He had an AR military-style rifle. Authorities said that they also found a 9 millimeter Glock handgun and a 22 millimeter Ruger pistol.”

[473] Article: “2 Texas Locals Reportedly Stopped the Church Mass Shooter From Killing More People.” By Kieran Corcoran. Business Insider, November 6, 2017. <www.businessinsider.com>

“Kelley, dressed in body armour and armed with a military-style rifle, shot dead more than two dozen worshippers, including at least one child as young as 5 years old.”

[474] Article: “Trump: ‘Hundreds More’ Would Have Died In Texas Church With Gun Laws Like Chicago’s.” CBS Chicago, November 7, 2017. <chicago.cbslocal.com>

“Kelley was able to legally obtain the military-style rifle and two handguns he used in the attack, even though he had a previous conviction for domestic violence.”

[475] Article: “Air Force Error Allowed Texas Gunman to Buy Weapons.” By David Montgomery and others. New York Times, November 6, 2017. <www.nytimes.com>

“Under federal law, the conviction of the gunman, Devin P. Kelley, for domestic assault on his wife and toddler stepson—he had cracked the child’s skull—should have stopped Mr. Kelley from legally purchasing the military-style rifle and three other guns he acquired in the last four years.”

[476] Article: “Observe How the Media Describes Stephen Willeford’s Firearm Vs. Devin Kelley.” by Carl Arbogast. RedState, November 8, 2017. <www.redstate.com>

“Looking through the stories about Willeford, a pattern emerges in their reporting. … Here are some examples.”

[477] Webpage: “Understanding America’s Rifle.” National Shooting Sports Foundation. Accessed February 26, 2020 at <www.nssf.org>

The term “modern sporting rifle” was coined to describe today’s very popular semiautomatic rifle designs, including the AR-15 and its offspring. These rifles are used by hunters, competitors, a lot of Americans seeking home-defense guns and by many others who simply enjoy going to the range.

Though modern sporting rifles are increasingly popular, they are too often misunderstood. …

If someone calls an AR-15-style rifle an “assault weapon,” then they’ve been duped by an agenda. The only real way to define what is an “assault weapon” is politically, as in how any given law chooses to define the term—this is why the states that have banned this category of semiautomatic firearms have done so with very different definitions.

[478] Search: “Assault Weapon OR “Assault Weapons.” Google News, May 20, 2020. Date delimited from 1/1/20 to 5/20/20. <news.google.com>

NOTE: This search produced 17,600 results, 243 of which were unique results that used the term “assault weapon” to describe a semi-automatic weapon.

[479] Article: “Biden Says if Elected in 2020 He Will Push to Ban Assault Weapons.” By Kate Sullivan. CNN, August 12, 2019. <www.cnn.com>

“There is so much we can do—practical, sensible steps that draw broad support among the American people,” he said, also writing that there is “overwhelming data” that shootings committed with assault weapons result in more deaths than shootings committee with other kinds of guns. …

Asked in the interview about criticism that if elected president he would take away people’s guns, Biden responded, “Bingo! You’re right if you have an assault weapon.” He said the Second Amendment doesn’t say the government can’t restrict what kind of weapons people can own….

[480] Transcript: “Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest.” The White House, June 13, 2016. <obamawhitehouse.archives.gov>

[Mr. Earnest:] These assault weapons are weapons of war. …

[Question:] [W]hat’s the impact of the fact that we’ve seen this specific type of gun, the AR-15 assault rifle, used in a number of these mass shootings? Has that changed this White House’s strategy on what needs to be done?

Mr. Earnest: Toluse, I think the President—I feel strongly in telling you that the President believes that it should be illegal for an individual to walk into a gun store and purchase an assault rifle. It’s a weapon of war, and the President believes that it should be banned and that it should not be legal for you to walk into a gun store to buy that weapon of war.

[481] Speech: “Remarks by President Biden on Gun Violence in America.” White House, June 2, 2022. <www.whitehouse.gov>

“We should reinstate the assault weapons ban and high-capacity magazines that we passed in 1994 with bipartisan support in Congress and the support of law enforcement.  Nine categories of semi-automatic weapons were included in that ban, like AK-47s and AR-15s.”

[482] Article: “The Most Versatile Semi-Automatic Rifles.” By John Haughey and Tyler Freel. Outdoor Life, November 20, 2011 Last updated 4/10/2019. <www.outdoorlife.com>

“Regardless of what you think or how you feel about using semi-automatic guns for hunting, autoloaders and AR-style rifles are becoming more common in [hunting] camps and virtually every major manufacturer is producing these guns in calibers heavy enough to drop deer, hogs and bears.”

[483] Article: “8 Experts Pick Their Home Defense Weapon of Choice.” By Jake Christopher. Ballistic Magazine, August 28, 2015. <www.ballisticmag.com>

Paul Buffoni

Affiliation: Bravo Company USA, Inc. / Prior service USMC [U.S. Marine Corps]

Position: Founder and CEO

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Rifle – BCM RECCE KMR

Top Shot Chris Cheng

Affiliation: Pro Staff for Bass Pro Shops, Leupold and Salient Arms International

Position: The History Channel’s Top Shot Champion

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – Glock 34

Walt Hasser

Affiliation: Armalite

Position: Vice President of Product Management

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – Glock 23

Jordan Hunter

Affiliation: Retired USMC Infantry

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – 9mm Glock 19 with Unity Tactical ATOM Slide

Frank Proctor

Affiliation: Way of the Gun Performance Shooting

Position: Owner/Instructor

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Rifle – AR-15

Nate Stokes

Affiliation: US Army Veteran, Law Enforcement Officer

Position: Police Officer

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Rifle – Daniel Defense Mk18

Rachel VandeVoort

Affiliation: Kimber Manufacturing

Position: Trade Relations Manager

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: Handgun – Currently the Stainless Ultra TLE II (LG) in .45 ACP, with two extra loaded mags.

Bill Wilson

Affiliation: Wilson Combat

Position: Founder/President

Home Defense Weapon of Choice: N/A- Varies.

[484] Book: Military Technology. By Ron Fridell. Lerner Publications, 2017.

Page 9:

For modern soldiers, the most common military weapon is the AK-47 assault rifle. The AK-47 is not a very accurate weapon. It shakes and rattles when fired. But it can unleash about 700 shots per minute.

The AK-47 is very reliable and is easy to buy. For this reason, it is the weapon of choice for most terrorists. Osama bin Laden, head of the al-Qaeda terrorist group, has called the AK-47 the terrorist’s most important weapon.

[485] Webpage: “Colt M4 Select Fire Carbine.” Colt’s Manufacturing LLC. Accessed March 18, 2022 at <www.colt.com>

Colt M4 Select Fire Carbine … The Colt M4 Carbine serves as the United States Armed Forces’ weapon of choice and the weapon of the 21st century warfighter. … Models … US Military: R0920 Safe-Semi-Burst [or] R0921 Safe-Semi-Auto”

[486] Webpage: “About the VPC.” Violence Policy Center. Accessed March 20, 2020 at <vpc.org>

The Violence Policy Center (VPC) works to stop gun death and injury through research, education, advocacy, and collaboration. Founded in 1988 by Executive Director Josh Sugarmann, a native of Newtown, Connecticut, the VPC informs the public about the impact of gun violence on their daily lives, exposes the profit-driven marketing and lobbying activities of the firearms industry and gun lobby, offers unique technical expertise to policymakers, organizations, and advocates on the federal, state, and local levels, and works for policy changes that save lives.

The VPC has a long and proven record of policy successes on the federal, state, and local levels, leading the National Rifle Association to acknowledge us as “the most effective … anti-gun rabble rouser in Washington.”

[487] Report: “Assault Weapons and Accessories in America.” By Josh Sugarmann. Firearms Policy Project of the Violence Policy Center, 1988. <www.vpc.org>

Conclusion

Assault weapons—just like armor-piercing bullets, machine guns, and plastic firearms—are a new topic. The weapons’ menacing looks, coupled with the public’s confusion over fully automatic machine guns versus semi-automatic assault weapons—anything that looks like a machine gun is assumed to be a machine gun—can only increase the chance of public support for restrictions on these weapons. In addition, few people can envision a practical use for these weapons.

[488] Report: “Assault Weapons and Accessories in America.” By Josh Sugarmann. Firearms Policy Project of the Violence Policy Center, 1988. <www.vpc.org>

Conclusion

Assault weapons—just like armor-piercing bullets, machine guns, and plastic firearms—are a new topic. The weapons’ menacing looks, coupled with the public’s confusion over fully automatic machine guns versus semi-automatic assault weapons—anything that looks like a machine gun is assumed to be a machine gun—can only increase the chance of public support for restrictions on these weapons. In addition, few people can envision a practical use for these weapons.

[489] Search: “Assault Weapon.” Google Books, May 12, 2020. Date-delimited to 1988 and earlier. <www.google.com>

NOTES:

  • This search produced one result that was initially published in 1986 and uses the term “assault weapon” to mean a semi-automatic weapon, which is implied by referencing a particular subdivision of the: New York City Charter and Administrative Code, Annotated. Williams Press, 1986. Page 588: “[Subdivision] 16. ‘Assault weapon.’ ” Page 599: “[S]ubdivision 16 of section 10–301 … peaceably surrender his or her assault weapon….” However, the subdivision that includes the term “assault weapon” was not added until 1991, as shown in this comprehensive document: Criminal Law Handbook of the State of New York. By Publisher’s Editorial Staff. LexisNexis, December 20, 2019. “NYC Administrative Code § 10–301 … [Subdivision] 16. ‘Assault weapon.’ (a) Any semiautomatic centerfire or rimfire rifle or semiautomatic shotgun which … Historical Notes … Subdivision 16 added L.L. 78/1991 § 6, eff. Sept. 30, 1991.”
  • This search produced another such result, which is a volume of books initially published in 1987. However, the term “assault weapon” does not appear until the 1991 edition of the volume: American Law of Products Liability 3d (Volume 2, Part 1). By Timothy E. Travers. Lawyers Co-Operative Publishing Company, 1991. Page 123: “The Assault Weapon Manufacturing Strict Liability Act of 1990 (D.C. Act 8-289), passed by the District of Columbia Council on December 11, 1990, and signed by the DC Mayor on December 17, 1990, would impose strict liability on manufacturers without requiring proof that the weapons were defective.”

[490] Search: “Assault Weapon” OR “Assault Weapons.” Google Books, March 31, 2022. Date-delimited from January 1, 1988 to January 1, 1998. <books.google.com>

[491] Book: State Laws and Ordinances on Firearms. Diane Publishing Company, 1994.

Page 31: “Any person who, within [Connecticut], distributes, transports or imports into the state, keeps for sale, or offers or exposes for sale, or who gives any assault weapon, except as provided by this act, shall be guilty of a class C felony and shall be sentenced to a term of imprisonment of Which two years may not be suspended or reduced.”

Page 123: “Columbus … No person shall knowingly possess an assault weapon, unless that weapon is registered pursuant to paragraph C of this Section. It is intended to ban possession of assault weapons, unless lawfully possessed prior to the effective date of this ordinance [09-30-89], in which case such assault weapons must be registered.”

[492] Book: United States Code Congressional and Administrative News (Volume 4). West Publishing Company, 1995.

Page 1837: “The California Department of Justice surveyed law enforcement agencies in the state in 1990, as the state’s legislature addressed ‘assault weapon’ ban legislation there. The California Department of Justice found that only 3.7 percent of the firearms that are used in homicides and assaults were ‘assault weapons.’

[493] Book: Assault Weapon Manufacturing Strict Liability Act of 1990: Hearing and Markup Before the Committee on the District of Columbia, House of Representatives, One Hundred Second Congress, First Session, on H.R. 3712, November 21, 1991. U.S. Government Printing Office, 1993.

Page 172: “In order to understand the legal underpinnings of the D.C. liability statute, we must first understand the nature of assault weapons. The guns reached by the D.C. law are combat weapons, not sporting firearms.”

[494] Book: The Flow of Precursor Chemicals and Assault Weapons From the United States Into the Andean Nations: Hearing Before the Select Committee on Narcotics Abuse and Control, House of Representatives, One Hundred First Congress, First Session, November 1, 1989 (Volume 4). U.S. Government Printing Office, 1990.

Page 232: “How are assault weapons treated under current state law? Most states have no restrictions at all on semi-automatic assault weapons. In all but 5 states, semi-automatic assault rifles and shotguns can be purchased cash-and-carry….”

[495] Webpage: “Summary of Senate Bill 386: Assault Weapon Control Act of 1989.” U.S. Senate, 101st Congress (1989–1990). Accessed May 13, 2020 at <www.congress.gov>

Sponsor: Metzenbaum, Howard M. [D-OH] (Introduced 02/08/1989)

Assault Weapon Control Act of 1989 – Amends the Federal criminal code to prohibit the transfer, importation, transportation, shipping, receipt, or possession of: (1) any assault weapon; and (2) a large-capacity detachable magazine or ammunition belt which can be employed by a semiautomatic firearm. Provides exceptions for transfers to, and possession by, a Federal, State, or local government entity and lawful possessions before specified dates.

Defines “assault weapon” to mean: (1) all firearms so designated under this Act (including Kalashnikov, Uzi, and AR-15 semiautomatic firearms); and (2) all other semiautomatic firearms which are determined by the Secretary of the Treasury to be assault weapons. Defines a large capacity magazine or belt as one which holds over ten rounds.

[496] Webpage: “Actions on Senate Bill 386: Assault Weapon Control Act of 1989.” U.S. Senate, 101st Congress (1989–1990). Accessed March 24, 2021 at <www.congress.gov>

“02/08/1989: Introduced in Senate”

[497] Webpage: “Summary of House Resolution 3355: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” U.S. House of Representatives, 103rd Congress (1993–1994). Accessed March 24, 2021 at <www.congress.gov>

Sponsor: Rep. Brooks, Jack B. [D–TX–9] …

Title XI: Firearms – Subtitle A: Assault Weapons – Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act – Amends the Federal criminal code to prohibit the manufacture, transfer, or possession of a semiautomatic assault weapon (SAW) as defined or listed under this Act. Sets penalties for violations and for use or possession of such a weapon during a crime of violence or drug trafficking crime. Requires the serial number of any such weapon manufactured after enactment of this Act to clearly show the date on which the weapon was manufactured.

Makes such provisions inapplicable to: (1) the transfer or possession of any SAW lawfully possessed on the date of this Act’s enactment; (2) certain hunting and sporting firearms; (3) the United States, a State, or a political subdivision; (4) the transfer of a SAW by a licensed manufacturer, importer, or dealer to a government entity or to a law enforcement officer authorized to purchase firearms for official use; (5) the possession, by an individual who is retired from service with an LEA and not otherwise prohibited from receiving a firearm, of a SAW transferred to the individual by the agency upon such retirement; and (6) the manufacture, transfer, or possession of a firearm by a licensed manufacturer or importer for purposes of testing or experimentation authorized by the Secretary of the Treasury.

(Sec. 110103) Prohibits the transfer or possession of a large capacity ammunition feeding device, with exceptions. Treats such devices as firearms. Sets penalties for violations. Requires any such device manufactured after the date of this Act’s enactment to be identified by a serial number that clearly shows that the device was manufactured or imported after the effective date of this Act.

[498] Public Law 103-322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress, (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title XI—Firearms

Subtitle A—Assault Weapons … This subtitle may be cited as the “Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act”.

Sec. 110102. Restriction on Manufacture, Transfer, and Possession of Certain Semiautomatic Assault Weapons.

(a) Restriction.—Section 922 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection: “(v)(l) It shall be unlawful for a person to manufacture, transfer, or possess a semiautomatic assault weapon.

Section 110105. Effective Date

This subtitle and the amendments made by this subtitle—

(1) shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act….

[499] Congress enacted the ban with 78% of Democrats voting for it and 75% of Republicans voting against it:

a) Vote 416: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” U.S. House of Representatives, August 21, 1994. <clerk.house.gov>

b) Vote 295: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” U.S. Senate, August 25, 1994. <www.senate.gov>

Party

Voted “Yes”

Voted “No”

Voted “Present” or Did Not Vote †

Number

Portion

Number

Portion

Number

Portion

Republican

53

24%

167

75%

2

1%

Democrat

242

78%

66

21%

4

1%

Independent

1

100%

0

0%

0

0%

NOTE: † Voting “Present” is effectively the same as not voting.

[500] Article: “Even Defining ‘Assault Rifles’ Is Complicated.” By Erica Goode. New York Times, January 16, 2013. <www.nytimes.com>

It was the gun industry that adopted the term “assault weapon,” an author noted.

Yet as Mr. Peterson noted in his buyer’s guide, it was the [gun] industry that adopted the term “assault weapon” to describe some types of semiautomatic firearms marketed to civilians. …

But the term “assault rifle” was expanded and broadened when gun manufacturers began to sell firearms modeled after the new military rifles to civilians. In 1984, Guns & Ammo advertised a book called “Assault Firearms,” which it said was “full of the hottest hardware available today.”

“The popularly held idea that the term ‘assault weapon’ originated with antigun activists, media or politicians is wrong,” Mr. Peterson wrote. “The term was first adopted by the manufacturers, wholesalers, importers and dealers in the American firearms industry to stimulate sales of certain firearms that did not have an appearance that was familiar to many firearm owners. The manufacturers and gun writers of the day needed a catchy name to identify this new type of gun.”

[501] Article: “Even Defining ‘Assault Rifles’ Is Complicated.” By Erica Goode. New York Times, January 16, 2013. <www.nytimes.com>

Guns & Ammo

The July 1981 issue of Guns & Ammo. It was the gun industry that adopted the term “assault weapon,” an author noted.

[502] Article: “Tomorrow’s State-of-the-Art Sporting Rifle.” By Art Blatt. Guns & Ammo, July 1981.

Front Cover: “Guns & Ammo … The New Breed of Assault Rifle.”

Page 48:

You say there’s no place for “military-style” arms in the world of sporting firearms? Granted, today’s service look-alikes are less stylish and graceful than a Remington Model 700BDL or one of Roy Weatherby’s colorful creations; however, these autoloading rifles from around the world are on the brink of revolutionizing the world of rifle shooting.

Page 49:

To those purists who state that there’s no place in the sporting world for “military”-type rifles-how can we forget that practically all of today’s “modern” bolt guns originated from the German 1898 Mauser? …

We asked Barry Kahn, owner of B&B Sales in North Hollywood, California—who is a major gun dealer in all types of military look-alikes—just who is snapping up these rifles in huge quantities. …

Barry informed us that those purchasing these “assault”-type rifles are from all walks of life and income groups. …

Overleaf: Today’s selective-fire military rifles have given rise to a number of semi-auto sporters, either directly adapted from, or inspired by, these military rifles. The sampling shown here includes: (1) Heckler & Koch HK-93 .223 Rem. …

Page 54:

Speaking of recoil, all of these guns generate less recoil than manually-operated rifles. Why? First, most of these autoloaders are gas-operated. Remember back in 1963 when Remington Arms introduced their popular Model 1100 shotgun? The boys from Bridgeport proved to the shooting world that gas-operated guns greatly reduced “kick” by spreading recoil out over a longer period of time.

Page 56:

Military-Type Semi-Automatic Sporting Rifle Specifications …

Another common besmirchment is that all military-type rifles aren’t accurate and their inherent inaccuracy is compensated for by their ability to belch out great quantities of ammunition in a short period of time. Only half of that statement is correct. The semi-auto cyclic rate is as fast as the shooter can manipulate his trigger finger. We were able to fire 20-round magazines with reasonable accuracy in time periods of less than five seconds.

[503] Book: The New York Public Library Writer’s Guide to Style and Usage. Edited by Andrea J. Sutcliffe. Stonesong Press/Harper Collins, 1994.

Page 586: “When writing for a specialized audience—one familiar with the topic or field—a writer must use jargon; it is the common idiom. When writing for a lay audience or the general public, a writer should use jargon only when necessary and define it carefully. Where plain English serves equally well, it should be used instead.”

[504] Book: The New Oxford Guide to Writing. By Thomas S. Kane. Oxford University Press, 1988.

Page 199: “Jargon is technical language misused. Technical language, the precise diction demanded by any specialized trade or profession, is necessary when experts communicate with one another. It becomes jargon when it is applied outside the limits of technical discourse.”

[505] Book: Writing for Journalists. By Wynford Hicks, Sally Adams & Harriet Gilbert. Routledge, 1999.

Page 125:

This emphasis on plainness and simplicity has been repeated by those who lay down the law about journalistic style. The Economist Pocket Style Book, first published in the 1980s, quotes George Orwell’s “six elementary rules” from his famous essay, “Politics and the English Language”, written in 1946. … 5. Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent.

[506] Book: English for Journalists (2nd edition). By Wynford Hicks. Routledge, 1998.

Page 73: “Jargon is specialized vocabulary, familiar to the members of a group, trade or profession. If you write for a newspaper or general magazine you should try to translate jargon into ordinary English whenever you can. … A common source of jargon is scientific, medical, government and legal handouts.”

[507] Webpage: “Guns & Ammo Print Magazine.” Amazon. Accessed April 22, 2020 at <www.amazon.com>

“Guns & Ammo magazine caters to both the professional and the casual shooting enthusiast with commentary from experts in the fields of competitive shooting, ammo reloading, hunting, personal defense, and the military.”

[508] Article: “Even Defining ‘Assault Rifles’ Is Complicated.” By Erica Goode. New York Times, January 16, 2013. <www.nytimes.com>

Phillip Peterson, a gun dealer in Indiana and the author of “Gun Digest Buyer’s Guide to Assault Weapons” (2008), said he had fought with his publishers over the use of the term in the title, knowing that it would only draw the ire of the gun industry. …

“The popularly held idea that the term ‘assault weapon’ originated with antigun activists, media or politicians is wrong,” Mr. Peterson wrote. “The term was first adopted by the manufacturers, wholesalers, importers and dealers in the American firearms industry to stimulate sales of certain firearms that did not have an appearance that was familiar to many firearm owners. The manufacturers and gun writers of the day needed a catchy name to identify this new type of gun.”

[509] Report: “Assault Weapons and Accessories in America.” By Josh Sugarmann. Firearms Policy Project of the Violence Policy Center, 1988. <www.vpc.org>

Conclusion

Assault weapons—just like armor-piercing bullets, machine guns, and plastic firearms—are a new topic. The weapons’ menacing looks, coupled with the public’s confusion over fully automatic machine guns versus semi-automatic assault weapons—anything that looks like a machine gun is assumed to be a machine gun—can only increase the chance of public support for restrictions on these weapons. In addition, few people can envision a practical use for these weapons.

[510] Article: “Even Defining ‘Assault Rifles’ Is Complicated.” By Erica Goode. New York Times, January 16, 2013. <www.nytimes.com>

But the term “assault rifle” was expanded and broadened when gun manufacturers began to sell firearms modeled after the new military rifles to civilians. In 1984, Guns & Ammo advertised a book called “Assault Firearms,” which it said was “full of the hottest hardware available today.”

“The popularly held idea that the term ‘assault weapon’ originated with antigun activists, media or politicians is wrong,” Mr. Peterson wrote. “The term was first adopted by the manufacturers, wholesalers, importers and dealers in the American firearms industry to stimulate sales of certain firearms that did not have an appearance that was familiar to many firearm owners. The manufacturers and gun writers of the day needed a catchy name to identify this new type of gun.”

[511] Pamphlet: “The Militarization of the U.S. Civilian Firearms Market.” Violence Policy Center, June 2011. <www.vpc.org>

Page 34:

all-new GA Assault Firearms … From the editors of Guns & Ammo comes an all-new publication full of the hottest hardware available today! GA Assault Firearms covers the field with “Big Bore” battle rifles, shotguns and assault rifles from the armies of the world. In addition, we’ll show you a new slant on .22s with “Plinkers in Battle Dress,” And if you are interested in survival tactics and personal defense, we’ll give you a look at the newest civilianized versions of the semi-auto submachine gun.

[512] Webpage: “The Associated Press Stylebook: 2022–2024 Paperback.” Amazon. Accessed July 18, 2022 at <www.amazon.com>

Master the style guidelines of news writing, editing, and common usage with this indispensable guide perfect for students and professional writers everywhere.

The style of The Associated Press is the gold standard for news writing. With the AP Stylebook in hand, you can learn how to write and edit with the clarity and professionalism for which their writers and editors are famous.

The AP Stylebook will help you master the AP’s rules on grammar, spelling, punctuation, capitalization, abbreviation, word and numeral usage, and when to use “more than” instead of “over.”

[513] Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law 2011. Edited by David Minthorn and others. Basic Books, 2011.

Page 295:

assault weapon: A semi-automatic firearm similar in appearance to a fully automatic firearm or military weapon. Not synonymous with assault rifle, which can be used in fully automatic mode. Wherever possible, be specific about the type of weapon: semi-automatic rifle, semi-automatic shotgun or semi-automatic pistol.

assault rifle: A rifle that is capable of being fired in fully automatic and semi-automatic modes, at the user’s option. Designed for, and used by, military forces. Also used by some law enforcement agencies. The form: an M16 assault rifle, an AK-47 assault rifle.

[514] Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law 2015. Perfection Learning Corporation, 2015.

assault rifle, assault weapon Terms for military or police-style weapons that are shorter than a conventional rifle and technically known as carbines. The precise definitions may vary from one law or jurisdiction to another. Although the terms are often used interchangeably, some make the distinction that assault rifle is a military weapon with a selector switch for firing in either fully automatic or semi-automatic mode from a detachable, 10- to 30-round magazine.

[515] Article: “Weapons.” Associated Press Stylebook. Accessed July 18, 2022 at <www.apstylebook.com>

semi-automatic rifle, assault rifle, assault weapon The preferred term for a rifle that fires one bullet each time the trigger is pulled, and automatically reloads for a subsequent shot, is a semi-automatic rifle. An automatic rifle continuously fires rounds if the trigger is depressed and until its ammunition is exhausted.

These terms do not convey any details about a rifle’s appearance, which is not integral to its function.

Avoid assault rifle and assault weapon, which are highly politicized terms that generally refer to AR- or AK-style rifles designed for the civilian market, but convey little meaning about the actual functions of the weapon. Avoid the terms preferred by advocates and gun manufacturers, such as military-style rifles or modern sporting rifles.

When reporting on guns, do not automatically repeat terms used by authorities, witnesses or others. Witnesses will often misinterpret the sound of a rapidly fired gun or base a description on the look of the weapon. Instead, seek specific and detailed information from authorities, such as a gun’s make, model, caliber and magazine capacity. For example, Authorities said the shooter used a Smith & Wesson M&P15 rifle or Authorities said the man used an AR-style semi-automatic rifle with a 30-round magazine. Where possible, state what the gun does: Authorities say he used a MAC-10 machine pistol, which fires a bullet and quickly reloads every time the trigger is pulled. Use more generalized descriptions, such as rifle or handgun, until such details become available.

[516] Transcript: “Remarks by the President at a DCCC [Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee] Event—San Francisco, CA.” The White House, April 4, 2013. <obamawhitehouse.archives.gov>

Now, over the next couple of months, we’ve got a couple of issues: gun control. (Applause.) I just came from Denver, where the issue of gun violence is something that has haunted families for way too long, and it is possible for us to create common-sense gun safety measures that respect the traditions of gun ownership in this country and hunters and sportsmen, but also make sure that we don’t have another 20 children in a classroom gunned down by a semiautomatic weapon—by a fully automatic weapon in that case, sadly.

[517] Report: “Shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.” State of Connecticut, Office of the Child Advocate, November 21, 2014. <portal.ct.gov>

Page 12: “According to available reports, within 8 minutes the shooter had killed, with an AR-15, twenty children ages 6 & 7, and six school personnel: the school principal, psychologist, teachers, and teachers’ assistants. As first responders were nearing the school, AL shot himself with a Glock 20 10mm Auto handgun.”

[518] Article: “Basic Firearm Safety Starts with Owner, Proper Training.” By Kyle Hodges. U.S. Army, March 11, 2016. <www.army.mil>

As an example of a myth, America’s most popular rifle—the AR-15—is often portrayed as being something it is not. Probably one of the more popular myths is that the “AR” stands for “assault rifle” or “automatic rifle.” It actually stands for “Armalite Rifle,” after the company that developed it in the 1950s.

While it’s true that a similar, burst-fire/fully-automatic version of this weapon is used by the military, the AR-15 purchased by civilians is only a semi-automatic firearm, just like many of the pistols on the market today.

[519] Speech: “Remarks by President Biden and First Lady Biden Honoring the Lives Lost in Buffalo, New York, and Calling on All Americans to Condemn White Supremacy” White House, May 17, 2022. <www.whitehouse.gov>

The venom of the haters and their weapons of war, the violence in the words and deeds that—that stalk our streets, our stores, our schools—this venom, this violence cannot be the story of our time. …

We can keep assault weapons off our streets.  We’ve done it before.  I did it when we passed the crime bill last time.  And violence went down, shootings went down. …

We have to refuse to live in a country where Black people going about a weekly grocery shopping can be gunned down by weapons of war deployed in a racist cause.

[520] Article: “Omar Mateen Probed for Terror Ties but Legally Purchased Weapons.” By Cassandra Vinograd and Frank Thorp. NBC News, June 13, 2016. <www.cnbc.com>

Omar Mateen used a legally purchased AR-15-style weapon to massacre at least 50 people in an Orlando gay club early Sunday. …

Hillary Clinton, meanwhile, stressed the need to keep “guns like the ones used” in Orlando out of terrorists’ and criminals’ hands.

“This is the deadliest mass shooting in the history of the United States and it reminds us once more that weapons of war have no place on our streets.”

[521] Report: “Rescue, Response, and Resilience: A Critical Incident Review of the Orlando Public Safety Response to the Attack on the Pulse Nightclub.” By Frank Straub and others. U.S. Department of Justice, 2017. <cops.usdoj.gov>

Page 15: “At 2:02 a.m., the suspect entered the club and immediately began firing a Sig Sauer MCX semiautomatic .223 caliber rifle and a Glock 17 9mm (shown on page 16) as fast as he could pull the triggers.”

[522] Webpage: “Sig MCX Virtus Pistol.” Sig Sauer. Accessed March 22, 2022 at <www.sigsauer.com>

“Caliber: 5.56 NATO [.223 Remington] … Barrel Length: 11.5 in (292 mm) … Action Type: Semi-Auto.”

[523] Webpage: “Hillary R. Clinton Biography.” Clinton Presidential Library & Museum. Accessed March 22, 2022 at <www.clintonlibrary.gov>

In 2015, Hillary Clinton announced her second campaign for President of the United States. She ran with Virginia senator and former governor Tim Kaine as her Vice Presidential candidate. At the 2016 Democratic National Convention she became the first woman to accept a major party’s nomination for President. While Hillary won the popular vote of the 2016 election, she failed to win the Electoral College and conceded the race to President Donald J. Trump.

[524] Transcript: “Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest.” The White House, June 13, 2016. <obamawhitehouse.archives.gov>

[Mr. Earnest:] [I]t is not clear what role anti-gay bigotry may have played in targeting the Pulse nightclub. …

[Question:] Josh, should the AR-15 be illegal in the United States?

Mr. Earnest: Rich, the President is very strongly on the record in favor of banning assault weapons. … These assault weapons are weapons of war. …

[Question:] And secondly, what’s the impact of the fact that we’ve seen this specific type of gun, the AR-15 assault rifle, used in a number of these mass shootings? Has that changed this White House’s strategy on what needs to be done?

Mr. Earnest: Toluse, I think the President—I feel strongly in telling you that the President believes that it should be illegal for an individual to walk into a gun store and purchase an assault rifle. It’s a weapon of war, and the President believes that it should be banned and that it should not be legal for you to walk into a gun store to buy that weapon of war.

[525] Report: “Rescue, Response, and Resilience: A Critical Incident Review of the Orlando Public Safety Response to the Attack on the Pulse Nightclub.” By Frank Straub and others. U.S. Department of Justice, 2017. <cops.usdoj.gov>

Page 15: “At 2:02 a.m., the suspect entered the club and immediately began firing a Sig Sauer MCX semiautomatic .223 caliber rifle and a Glock 17 9mm (shown on page 16) as fast as he could pull the triggers.”

[526] Webpage: “Sig MCX Virtus Pistol.” Sig Sauer. Accessed March 22, 2022 at <www.sigsauer.com>

“Caliber: 5.56 NATO [.223 Remington] … Barrel Length: 11.5 in (292 mm) … Action Type: Semi-Auto.”

[527] Article: “What to Know About the Type of Gun Used in the Orlando Shooting.” By Will Drabold. Time, June 13, 2016. <time.com>

“The Orlando shooting has once again put military-style assault rifles back in the spotlight.

Police say Omar Mateen used a Sig Sauer MCX, a semiautomatic assault style rifle that is similar in appearance and capabilities to the better-known AR-15, when he killed 49 people and injured more than 50 others in the deadliest shooting in U.S. history.”

[528] Report: “Rescue, Response, and Resilience: A Critical Incident Review of the Orlando Public Safety Response to the Attack on the Pulse Nightclub.” By Frank Straub and others. U.S. Department of Justice, 2017. <cops.usdoj.gov>

Page 15: “At 2:02 a.m., the suspect entered the club and immediately began firing a Sig Sauer MCX semiautomatic .223 caliber rifle and a Glock 17 9mm (shown on page 16) as fast as he could pull the triggers.”

[529] Webpage: “Sig MCX Virtus Patrol.” Sig Sauer. Accessed March 30, 2020 at <www.sigsauer.com>

“Caliber: 5.56 NATO [.223 Remington] … Barrel Length: 11.5 in (292 mm) … Action Type: Semi-Auto.”

[530] Article: “Assault Rifles Are Becoming Mass Shooters’ Weapon of Choice.” By Christopher Ingraham. Washington Post, June 12, 2016. <www.washingtonpost.com>

“Terrorist groups have taken note of the widespread availability of assault rifles and other guns in the U.S. In 2011, al-Qaeda encouraged its followers to take advantage of lax guns laws, purchase assault-style weapons and use them to shoot people.”

[531] Report: “Rescue, Response, and Resilience: A Critical Incident Review of the Orlando Public Safety Response to the Attack on the Pulse Nightclub.” By Frank Straub and others. U.S. Department of Justice, 2017. <cops.usdoj.gov>

Page 15: “At 2:02 a.m., the suspect entered the club and immediately began firing a Sig Sauer MCX semiautomatic .223 caliber rifle and a Glock 17 9mm (shown on page 16) as fast as he could pull the triggers.”

[532] Webpage: “Sig MCX Virtus Pistol.” Sig Sauer. Accessed March 22, 2022 at <www.sigsauer.com>

“Caliber: 5.56 NATO [.223 Remington] … Barrel Length: 11.5 in (292 mm) … Action Type: Semi-Auto.”

[533] Article: “Omar Mateen Pledged Allegiance to ISIS, Official Says.” By Evan Perez and others. CNN, June 12, 2016. <www.cnn.com>

“They also haven’t said what led Mateen to attack the Pulse nightclub, which bills itself as ‘the hottest gay bar in Orlando.’ … The gunman was armed with a handgun, an assault rifle and an unknown number of rounds when he attacked, Orlando Police Chief John Mina told reporters.”

[534] Report: “Rescue, Response, and Resilience: A Critical Incident Review of the Orlando Public Safety Response to the Attack on the Pulse Nightclub.” By Frank Straub and others. U.S. Department of Justice, 2017. <cops.usdoj.gov>

Page 15: “At 2:02 a.m., the suspect entered the club and immediately began firing a Sig Sauer MCX semiautomatic .223 caliber rifle and a Glock 17 9mm (shown on page 16) as fast as he could pull the triggers.”

[535] Webpage: “Sig MCX Virtus Pistol.” Sig Sauer. Accessed March 22, 2022 at <www.sigsauer.com>

“Caliber: 5.56 NATO [.223 Remington] … Barrel Length: 11.5 in (292 mm) … Action Type: Semi-Auto.”

[536] Article: “Here’s What You Need to Know About the Weapons of War Used in Mass Shootings.” By Nick Wing and Mollie Reilly. The Huffington Post, June 13, 2016. Updated 6/15/16. <www.huffpost.com>

Mass shooters are well aware that assault-style rifles are easy to obtain and capable of causing enormous casualties. …

According to some counts, there have been nine mass shootings in the past year, including a massacre at a church in Charleston, South Carolina, the anniversary of which will be observed this week. In six of those mass shootings, perpetrators were armed with assault-style rifles. In a seventh—the November attack on a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs, Colorado that killed three and wounded nine—the shooter was widely reported to have been armed with an AK-47-style rifle, along with other guns that authorities haven’t specified.

[537] Report: “Rescue, Response, and Resilience: A Critical Incident Review of the Orlando Public Safety Response to the Attack on the Pulse Nightclub.” By Frank Straub and others. U.S. Department of Justice, 2017. <cops.usdoj.gov>

Page 15: “At 2:02 a.m., the suspect entered the club and immediately began firing a Sig Sauer MCX semiautomatic .223 caliber rifle and a Glock 17 9mm (shown on page 16) as fast as he could pull the triggers.”

[538] Webpage: “Sig MCX Virtus Pistol.” Sig Sauer. Accessed March 22, 2022 at <www.sigsauer.com>

“Caliber: 5.56 NATO [.223 Remington] … Barrel Length: 11.5 in (292 mm) … Action Type: Semi-Auto.”

[539] Book: Writing for Journalists. By Wynford Hicks, Sally Adams & Harriet Gilbert. Routledge, 1999.

Page 125:

This emphasis on plainness and simplicity has been repeated by those who lay down the law about journalistic style. The Economist Pocket Style Book, first published in the 1980s, quotes George Orwell’s “six elementary rules” from his famous essay, “Politics and the English Language”, written in 1946. … 5. Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent.

[540] Textbook: Princeton Readings in Political Thought: Essential Texts Since Plato – Revised and Expanded Edition. Edited by Mitchell Cohen. Princeton University Press, July 31, 2018.

Page 583:

George Orwell

Politics and the English Language.

Page 586:

The words democracy, socialism, freedom, patriotic, realistic, justice, have each of them several different meanings which cannot be reconciled with one another. In the case of a word like democracy, not only is there no agreed definition, but the attempt to make one is resisted from all sides. It is almost universally felt that when we call a country democratic we are praising it: consequently the defenders of every kind of regime claim that it is a democracy, and fear that they might have to stop using the word if it were tied down to any one meaning. Words of this kind are often used in a consciously dishonest way. That is, the person who uses them has his own private definition, but allows his hearer to think he means something quite different. Statements like Marshal Petain was a true patriot, The Soviet press is the freest in the world, The Catholic Church is opposed to persecution, are almost always made with intent to deceive. Other words used in variable meanings, in most cases more or less dishonestly, are: class, totalitarian, science, progressive, reactionary, bourgeois, equality.

[541] New Jersey Code: Title 2C, Section 2C:39-1: “Definitions.” Accessed May 23, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

“y. ‘Large capacity ammunition magazine’ means a box, drum, tube or other container which is capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition to be fed continuously and directly therefrom into a semi-automatic firearm. The term shall not include an attached tubular device which is capable of holding only .22 caliber rimfire ammunition.”

[542] California Code: Part 6, Title 1, Division 2, Section 16740: “Control of Deadly Weapons, Definitions.” Accessed May 23, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

As used in this part, “large-capacity magazine” means any ammunition feeding device with the capacity to accept more than 10 rounds, but shall not be construed to include any of the following:

(a) A feeding device that has been permanently altered so that it cannot accommodate more than 10 rounds.

(b) A .22 caliber tube ammunition feeding device.

(c) A tubular magazine that is contained in a lever-action firearm.

[543] New York Code: Part 3, Title P, Article 265, Section 265.37: “Unlawful Possession of a Large Capacity Feeding Device.” Accessed May 24, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

It shall be unlawful  for  a  person  to  knowingly  possess  a  large   capacity   ammunition   feeding  device  manufactured  before  September   thirteenth, nineteen hundred ninety-four, and if  such  person  lawfully   possessed  such  large capacity feeding device before the effective date   of the chapter of the laws of two thousand  thirteen  which  added  this   section,  that  has  a  capacity  of, or that can be readily restored or   converted to accept, more than ten rounds of ammunition.

[544] Report: “Impacts of the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban: 1994–96.” By Jeffrey A. Roth and Christopher S. Koper. U.S. Department of Justice, National Institute of Justice, March 1999. <www.ojp.gov>

Page 2: “ ‘large capacity magazines,’ defined as ammunition-feeding devices designed to hold more than 10 rounds….”

[545] Report: “Large Capacity Magazines.” Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. Accessed April 15, 2022 at <giffords.org>

“Although the statutory definitions vary, magazines with a capacity of more than 10 rounds of ammunition are generally considered ‘large capacity’ magazines.”

[546] Public Law 103-322: “Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.” 103rd U.S. Congress (1993–1994). Signed into law by Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. <www.congress.gov>

Title XI—Firearms

Subtitle A—Assault Weapons … This subtitle may be cited as the “Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act”.

Sec. 110102. Restriction on Manufacture, Transfer, and Possession of Certain Semiautomatic Assault Weapons.

(a) Restriction.—Section 922 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection: (v)(l) It shall be unlawful for a person to manufacture, transfer, or possess a semiautomatic assault weapon. …

(b) DEFINITION OF SEMIAUTOMATIC ASSAULT WEAPON.—Section 921(a) of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

(30) The term ‘semiautomatic assault weapon’ means—

(A) any of the firearms, or copies or duplicates of the firearms in any caliber, known as—

(i) Norinco, Mitchell, and Poly Technologies Avtomat Kalashnikovs (all models);

(ii) Action Arms Israeli Military Industries UZI and Galil;

(iii) Beretta Ar70 (SC-70);

(iv) ColtAR-15;

(v) Fabrique National FN/FAL, FN/LAR, and FNC;

(vi) SWD M-10, M-11, M-11/9, and M-12;

(vii) SteyrAUG;

(viii) INTRATEC TEC-9, TEC-DC9 and TEC-22; and

(ix) revolving cylinder shotguns, such as (or similar to) the Street Sweeper and Striker 12;

(B) a semiautomatic rifle that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of—

(i) a folding or telescoping stock;

(ii) a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon;

(iii) a bayonet mount;

(iv) a flash suppressor or threaded barrel designed to accommodate a flash suppressor; and

(v) a grenade launcher;

(C) a semiautomatic pistol that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of—

(i) an ammunition magazine that attaches to the pistol outside of the pistol grip;

(ii) a threaded barrel capable of accepting a barrel extender, flash suppressor, forward handgrip, or silencer;

(iii) a shroud that is attached to, or partially or completely encircles, the barrel and that permits the shooter to hold the firearm with the nontrigger hand without being burned;

(iv) a manufactured weight of 50 ounces or more when the pistol is unloaded; and

(v) a semiautomatic version of an automatic firearm; and

(D) a semiautomatic shotgun that has at least 2 of—

(i) a folding or telescoping stock;

(ii) a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon;

(iii) a fixed magazine capacity in excess of 5 rounds; and

(iv) an ability to accept a detachable magazine. …

Sec. 110103. Ban of Large Capacity Ammunition Feeding Devices.

(a) Prohibition.—Section 922 of title 18, United States Code, as amended by section 110102(a), is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:

(w)(l) Except as provided in paragraph (2), it shall be unlawful for a person to transfer or possess a large capacity ammunition feeding device. …

(b) Definition of Large Capacity Ammunition Feeding Device.—Section 921(a) of title 18, United States Code, as amended by section 110102(b), is amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

(31) The term “large capacity ammunition feeding device”—

(A) means a magazine, belt, drum, feed strip, or similar device manufactured after the date of enactment of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 that has a capacity of, or that can be readily restored or converted to accept, more than 10 rounds of ammunition; but

(B) does not include an attached tubular device designed to accept, and capable of operating only with, .22 caliber rimfire ammunition. …

Sec. 110105. Effective Date

This subtitle and the amendments made by this subtitle—

(1) shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act; and

(2) are repealed effective as of the date that is 10 years after that date.

[547] Report: “Firearms Production in the United States.” National Shooting Sports Foundation, November 13, 2020. <www.nssf.org>

Page 7: “NSSF® [National Shooting Sports Foundation] Magazine Chart: Estimated 304 Million Detachable Pistol and Rifle Magazines in U.S. Consumer Possession 1990–2018 … Pistol Magazines 11+ rounds [=] 71,200,000 … Rifle Magazines 30+ rounds [=] 79,200,000”

[548] Webpage: “NSSF Releases Most Recent Firearm Production Figures.” National Shooting Sports Foundation, November 16, 2020. <www.nssf.org>

NSSF® [National Shooting Sports Foundation], the firearm industry’s trade association, released the 2020 edition of its Firearm Production Report to members. The report compiles the most up to date information based on data sourced from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ (ATF’s) Annual Firearms Manufacturing and Export Reports (AFMER) as well as the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC). Key findings for public release showed: …

There are approximately 71.2 million pistol magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds, and 79.2 million rifle magazines capable of holding 30 or more rounds in circulation.

[549] Webpage: “The Best Semi-Automatic Handguns You Actually Might Be Able to Find.” Outdoor Life. Last updated May 27, 2022. <www.outdoorlife.com>

“We’re going to kick this off with the most obvious, and certainly the most popular choice, which is none other than the Glock 19. Glock is without question the first stop for many when the search begins for a self-defense pistol. They are relatively inexpensive, easily obtainable (in normal times) and are reliable as a hammer.”

[550] Webpage: “The Standard: Glock 19 Gen5.” Glock, Inc. Accessed June 13, 2022 at <gen5.glock.us>

“The most popular Glock pistol of all time is now available with the numerous improvements that define the Gen 5 pistol line. … Technical … Magazine Capacity: 15”

[551] “Equipment Reference Catalog [ERC].” Seattle (Washington) Police Department, September 2019. <www.seattle.gov>

Page 2: “This document shall serve as the order of the Chief of Police for all approved equipment items to be utilized by the Seattle Police Department. Officers shall only purchase and deploy with items listed herein. Officers shall not deploy equipment not authorized by the Department.”

Page 4:

Primary Duty Firearm

Glock Semi-Automatic Handgun

• Glock Model 17 or 19, 9mm

• Glock Model 22 or 23, .40 S&W

• Glock Model 21SF or 30SF, .45ACP

NOTE: The next three footnotes document the magazine capacity of these guns.

[552] Webpage: “Glock 17 – The Original.” Glock, Inc. Accessed May 25, 2022 at <us.glock.com>

“Technical Data … Mag. Capacity … Standard: 17 … Optional: 19 / 24 / 31 / 33”

[553] Webpage: “G22.” Glock, Inc. Accessed July 16, 2022 at <us.glock.com>

By far the most popular police service pistol in the United States, the GLOCK 22 fires the potent 40 S&W cartridge and holds more rounds for its size and weight than most other full-sized handgun in its class. …

Technical Data … Mag. Capacity … Standard: 15 … Optional: 22 / 16

[554] Webpage: “G21SF.” Glock, Inc. Accessed July 16, 2022 at <us.glock.com>

“Technical Data … Mag. Capacity … Standard: 13”

[555] “Florida Highway Patrol Policy Manual.” Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, February 1, 1996. Revised 6/16/2021. <www.flhsmv.gov>

Page 10.02-3:

Primary Duty Service Handgun – The authorized duty service handgun of the Florida Highway Patrol is the Glock 45 MOS [Modular Optic System].

1. The Glock 45 MOS will be carried with one round in the chamber and the magazine loaded with the manufacturer’s recommended capacity. …

3. Members are required to be armed with the service handgun and to carry such handgun on their person while on duty….

NOTE: The next footnote documents the magazine capacity of this gun.

[556] Webpage: “Glock 45 MOS – Compact Crossover in Black with Modular Optic System.” Glock, Inc. Accessed May 24, 2022 at <us.glock.com>

“Technical Data … Mag. Capacity … Standard: 17 … Optional: 17 / 19 / 24 / 31 / 33”

[557] “San Antonio Police Department General Manual.” San Antonio (Texas) Police Department, April 5, 2021. <www.sanantonio.gov>

Page 3:

General Rules for Carrying Firearms: Sworn Officers

A. Uniformed Officers: Officers wearing the regulation uniform or the officer’s unit-specific uniform shall conform to the following:

1. The Department-issued non-optics ready S&W M&P40 [Smith & Wesson Military & Police] is the approved primary handgun for uniformed officers to carry. Personally owned optics ready S&W M&P40 may be carried by uniformed officers after submission and approval of SAPD form 60 RCF, Request to Carry Firearm, through their chain of command.

a. The S&W M&P40 will be carried in an approved holster on the equipment belt.

b. The S&W M&P40will be carried with a round in the chamber and the magazine fully loaded.

c. Two fully-loaded magazines will be carried in a magazine pouch on the equipment belt.

NOTE: The next footnote documents the magazine capacity of this gun.

[558] Webpage: “Archive: M&P 40 [Military & Police].” Smith&Wesson. Accessed May 25, 2022 at <www.smith-wesson.com>

“Specifications … Capacity: 15+1”

[559] Order: “Weapons Policy.” Lexington (Kentucky) Police Department, February 13, 2016. <www.lexingtonky.gov>

Page 1 (of PDF): “While on duty, all officers shall be armed with a department approved weapon, department approved ammunition, and extra ammunition on their person.”

Page 15: “Department Approved Weapons and Equipment … Brand: Glock … Model: 17 … Brand: Glock … Model: 19”

NOTE: The next two footnotes document the magazine capacity of these guns.

[560] Webpage: “Glock 17 – The Original.” Glock, Inc. Accessed May 25, 2022 at <us.glock.com>

“Technical Data … Mag. Capacity … Standard: 17 … Optional: 19 / 24 / 31 / 33”

[561] Webpage: “The All-Round Talent.” Glock, Inc. Accessed May 25, 2022 at <us.glock.com>

The GLOCK 19 in 9 mm Luger is ideal for a versatile role thanks to its reduced dimensions when compared to the standard sized option. In addition to its use as a conventional service pistol, it is ideal for use as a backup weapon or for concealed carry purpose. …

Technical Data … Mag. Capacity … Standard: 15 … Optional: 17 / 19 / 24 / 31 / 33

[562] Directive: “Firearms and Accessories.” Montgomery County (Maryland) Department of Police, August 2, 2017. <www.montgomerycountymd.gov>

Officers will carry their department issued and/or approved handgun magazine filled to capacity (i.e., a 17 round magazine will have 16 in the magazine and 1 in the chamber; a 15 round magazine will have 14 in the magazine and 1 in the chamber, etc). Each additional magazine will be filled to capacity.

[563] Webpage: “Firearms Information: Firearms FAQS.” New Jersey State Police. Accessed April 18, 2022 at <nj.gov>

Qualified retired law enforcement officers that have registered a handgun(s) with the New Jersey State Police as part of the Retired Police Officers permit to carry program may possess a magazine with a capacity of up to 15 rounds of ammunition for that specific registered handgun(s). Active duty law enforcement officers may possess magazines with a capacity of up to 17 rounds for personal firearms and over 17 rounds for any department issued firearm.

[564] Petition: Association of New Jersey Rifle & Pistol Clubs v. New Jersey. U.S. Supreme Court, April 26, 2021. <www.supremecourt.gov>

Page 4: “And the standard-issue weapon for law-enforcement officers in New Jersey and elsewhere—the Glock 19 pistol—comes standard with a 15-round magazine.”

[565] California Code: Part 6, Title 4, Division 10, Chapter 5, Article 2: “Exceptions Relating Specifically to Large Capacity Magazines.” Accessed May 25, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

Section 32400: (<law.justia.com>)

Section 32310 does not apply to the sale of, giving of, lending of, possession of, importation into this state of, or purchase of, any large-capacity magazine to or by any federal, state, county, city and county, or city agency that is charged with the enforcement of any law, for use by agency employees in the discharge of their official duties, whether on or off duty, and where the use is authorized by the agency and is within the course and scope of their duties.

Section 32405: (<law.justia.com>)

Section 32310 does not apply to the sale to, lending to, transfer to, purchase by, receipt of, possession of, or importation into this state of, a large-capacity magazine by a sworn peace officer, as defined in Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 830) of Title 3 of Part 2, or sworn federal law enforcement officer, who is authorized to carry a firearm in the course and scope of that officer’s duties.

Section 32406: (<law.justia.com>)

Subdivision (c) of Section 32310 does not apply to an honorably retired sworn peace officer, as defined in Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 830) of Title 3 of Part 2, or honorably retired sworn federal law enforcement officer, who was authorized to carry a firearm in the course and scope of that officer’s duties. “Honorably retired” shall have the same meaning as provided in Section 16690.

NOTE: See the next footnote for context regarding these exceptions.

[566] California Code: Part 6, Title 4, Division 10, Chapter 5, Article 1: “Rules Governing Large Capacity Magazines.” Accessed May 25, 2022 at <law.justia.com>

(a) Except as provided in Article 2 (commencing with Section 32400) of this chapter and in Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 17700) of Division 2 of Title 2, any person in this state who manufactures or causes to be manufactured, imports into the state, keeps for sale, or offers or exposes for sale, or who gives, lends, buys, or receives any large-capacity magazine is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year or imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.

(b) For purposes of this section, “manufacturing” includes both fabricating a magazine and assembling a magazine from a combination of parts, including, but not limited to, the body, spring, follower, and floor plate or end plate, to be a fully functioning large-capacity magazine.

(c) Except as provided in Article 2 (commencing with Section 32400) of this chapter and in Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 17700) of Division 2 of Title 2, commencing July 1, 2017, any person in this state who possesses any large-capacity magazine, regardless of the date the magazine was acquired, is guilty of an infraction punishable by a fine not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100) per large-capacity magazine, or is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100) per large-capacity magazine, by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment.

(d) Any person who may not lawfully possess a large-capacity magazine commencing July 1, 2017 shall, prior to July 1, 2017:

(1) Remove the large-capacity magazine from the state;

(2) Sell the large-capacity magazine to a licensed firearms dealer; or

(3) Surrender the large-capacity magazine to a law enforcement agency for destruction.

(Amended November 8, 2016, by initiative Proposition 63, Sec. 6.1.)

[567]  Paper: “The Real Risks During Deadly Police Shootouts: Accuracy of the Naive Shooter.” By William J. Lewinski and others. International Journal of Police Science & Management, 2015. Pages 117–126. <www.researchgate.net>

Page 117:

This study aimed to examine the level of shooting accuracy demonstrated by law enforcement recruits upon completion of their law enforcement firearms training in comparison with novice shooters. One hundred and ninety-five male and 52 female law enforcement recruits volunteered. Participants were separated by firearms experience into the following groups: expert (completed law enforcement firearms course, n = 83), intermediate (recreational experience, n = 71) and novice (minimal/no experience, n = 93). All subjects were tested for accuracy at target locations from 3 to 75 ft.

Page 121:

Table I. Hit Accuracy by Group and Distance.

Distance

3–15 ft

18–45 ft

Rounds Fired

9

12

Group

Rounds Hit

%

Rounds Hit

%

Expert

7.89 (1.10)

87.68

4.55 (2.17)

37.95

Intermediate

7.52 (1.41)

83.57

4.90 (2.10)

40.85

Novice

6.78 (1.80)

75.39

3.31 (1.96)

27.6

Distance

60–75 ft

Overall

Rounds fired

6

27

Group

Rounds Hit

%

Rounds Hit*

%

Expert

0.84 (0.90)

14.06

13.30 (2.93)

49.26

Intermediate

0.76 (0.87)

12.68

13.01 (3.03)

48.2

Novice

0.33 (0.57)

5.56

10.51 (3.07)

39.91

*See Figure 2 and Discussion section for significance levels.

Pages 124–125:

Overall, the results of this study indicate that trained officers had a very small advantage in shooting accuracy over intermediate and novice shooters. Although the level of experience in intermediate shooters may have played a significant role in these findings, it is pertinent to remember that officers are expected to be able to perform with incredible precision and when their training, performance and accuracy fall short, it often results in injury, death or other severe consequences for themselves and others.

[568] “2020 Use of Force Report.” New York City Police Department, December 29, 2021. <www1.nyc.gov>

Page 19:

In 2020, there were 25 intentional firearm discharge-adversarial conflict incidents (ID-AC), involving 51 uniformed members of the service who discharged their firearms. These conflicts involved 28 subjects. In nine different ID-AC incidents, subjects discharged firearms directly at members of the service. As a result of the ID-AC incidents occurring in 2020, 12 subjects were shot, of whom eight died.

Page 25: “Uniformed members of the service discharged a total of 259 rounds during ID-AC incidents in 2020….”

[569] “Annual Firearms Discharge Report.” New York City Police Department, November 9, 2011. <www1.nyc.gov>

Page 48:

On March 22, at 1225 hours, in the confines of the 44th Precinct, four uniformed officers responded to a 911 call about a dispute involving a firearm. Upon arrival at the Morrisania Air Rights Houses, the officers were met by a female complainant who had been assaulted and menaced at gunpoint by the adult son of an elderly woman for whom the complainant was a home attendant. Proceeding to the elderly woman’s apartment, the officers discovered that the subject, a male Hispanic, had retreated to a bedroom just past the living room. A second adult son informed the subject in English and Spanish that the police were present. One officer approached the bedroom door and forcibly opened it, at which point the subject opened fire with a .38 caliber Smith & Wesson revolver. The officer at the bedroom door was struck in the chest, but saved by his bullet resistant vest. As he fell back, injured, he returned fire, but was also fired upon again by the subject. In this second exchange he was struck twice in the lower abdomen, beneath his vest, and severely injured. He nevertheless returned fire, ultimately discharging all 16 rounds from his weapon, and the subject fell back into the bedroom. The three other officers, who were also in the line of fire, discharged two, one, and two rounds, respectively, as they dragged their wounded partner back to the living room and safety. At this point supervisors arrived on scene, and ordered the location locked down and the wounded evacuated. Emergency Services deployed mechanical means and a canine officer to assess the scene, and determined that the subject had been struck three times and killed. His revolver, with four spent rounds and a live round in the cylinder, was recovered. The subject had no arrest history.

Page 25: “Uniformed members of the service discharged a total of 259 rounds during ID-AC incidents in 2020….”

[570] Paper: “Unusually Low Mortality of Penetrating Wounds of the Chest: Twelve Years’ Experience.” By Ashis K. Mandal, MD, and Sonny S. Oparah, MD. The Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, January 1989. Pages 119–125. <www.jtcvs.org>

Page 119:

Within a 12-year period ending in March 1984, 1109 patients with penetrating thoracic injuries were treated at King-Drew Medical Center located in south central Los Angeles. The average age of the patients was 28.1 years. There were 607 stab wounds and 502 gunshot wounds. … Of the 1109 patients, 105 had cardiac injuries. All patients with cardiac trauma underwent thoracotomy, and the mortality rate was 18.1%. Specifically, the mortality rate of gunshot wound of the heart 24.5 % and that of stab wound of the heart, 11.5%. In contrast, of the 1004 patients without cardiac injuries, only 115 required thoracotomy and the mortality rate in this group was 0.8% (8/1004). The mortality rate was 69.6% in patients who had a thoracotomy in the emergency room but only 2.8% in patients who had a thoracotomy in the operating room within the first 24 hours after admission. In the 242 patients who had associated abdominal injuries, the mortality rate was 2.1% (5/242\ as compared with 2.5% (22/867) for those who had isolated chest injuries. In the entire group, the incidence of complications was 5.1%, of which 1.8% were infectious complications. The presence of associated abdominal injuries did not influence the outcome. The mortality rate in noncardiac thoracic injuries is very low compared with that of cardiac injury. Because of the complexity of the injury, gunshot wound of the heart has the highest mortality rate. …

Victims of penetrating thoracic injuries in civilian life usually reach the hospital alive; however, as in wartime, lethal truncal injuries often result in death before a treatment unit is reached.6 In this article, we have reviewed our experience with penetrating chest injuries.

Patients and methods

Between April 1972 and March 1984, 1109 patients with penetrating injuries to the chest were hospitalized at Martin Luther King, Jr., Los Angeles County General Hospital. … The causes of injury were stab wounds in 607 patients and gunshot wounds in 502. One hundred five patients had cardiac injuries, 52 (45 male, 7 female) from stab wounds and 53 (50 male, 3 female) from gunshot wounds. The remaining 1004 patients had noncardiac chest injuries.

Page 121: “Table II. Mortality According to Type of Treatment … Patients … GSW [gun shot wounds] … Deaths/patients … Total [=] 19/502 … % [=] 3.8”

Page 122:

Table III. Mortality Rates

Type of Wounds

No. of Patients

No. of Deaths

Percent

Penetrating Wounds of Heart

Stab wounds

52

6

11.5

Gunshot wounds

53

13

24.5

Total

105

19

18.1

Noncardiac Penetrating Chest Wounds

Stab wounds

555

2

0.4

Gunshot wounds

449

6

1.3

Total

1004

8

0.8

[571] Video: “Magazine Ban.” By Ken Campbell, Firearms101usa, February 23, 2013. <www.youtube.com>

Time marker 1:45–7:29:

Semi-automatic pistol demonstration by expert and novice shooters.

Our first comparison will be with semi-automatic pistols, and our demonstrators will be firing two 15-round standard capacity magazines out of their pistols. We’ll time the results of these aimed shots on multiple targets, and then we’ll do the next comparison with three 10-round capacity magazines, and then also just again for your education we will do five 6-round magazines so you can see what the timing sequence is there. …

So in review, firing the two 15-round magazines his time was 20.64 seconds. The three 10-round magazines at the three targets was 18.05 seconds, and then firing five 6-round magazines at the three targets was 21.45 seconds. …

So, to review, Christy’s times for two 15-round magazines was 22.9 seconds. The three 10-round magazines was 25.51 seconds, and the five 6-round magazines was 26.93 seconds.

[572] Webpage: “Ken Campbell, Chief Executive Officer, Gunsite Academy.” Gunsite Academy, Inc. Accessed May 28, 2022 at <www.gunsite.com>

Sheriff (Ret.) Ken Campbell had over 35 years of experience at the Boone County Indiana Sheriff’s Office in Central Indiana when he retired in 2014. His duties have included: Special Response Team (SWAT) Team Commander, K-9 Handler, Crash Reconstructionist, Hazardous Materials Technician, Reserve Unit Commander, Shift Supervisor, Enforcement Division Captain, Firearms Instructor and Armorer, and two (2) terms as the elected Sheriff. …

Firearms training over the years included Remington, Glock, Colt, Smith and Wesson, H&K, and many others.  He is a Colt 1911 and AR Series, Glock and S&W Revolver and Auto-Pistol Armorer.

[573] Video: “Magazine Ban.” By Ken Campbell, Firearms101usa, February 23, 2013. <www.youtube.com>

Time marker 7:33–9:34:

AR-15 20- and 10-round magazine demonstrations by expert and novice shooters.

Jim’s about to demonstrate our next drill, shooting an AR-15 with one 20-round magazine, and then we’ll do a comparison with two 10-round magazines. … Jim’s time was 12.16 seconds for that one 20-round magazine. … Jim’s time with the two 10-round magazines was 10.73 seconds. So actually, he was 1.43 seconds quicker with the reload. … Christy’s time with the one 20-round magazine was 12.26 seconds. … With Christy firing two 10-round magazines, her time took 14.63 seconds.

[574] Webpage: “Ken Campbell, Chief Executive Officer, Gunsite Academy.” Gunsite Academy, Inc. Accessed May 28, 2022 at <www.gunsite.com>

Sheriff (Ret.) Ken Campbell had over 35 years of experience at the Boone County Indiana Sheriff’s Office in Central Indiana when he retired in 2014. His duties have included: Special Response Team (SWAT) Team Commander, K-9 Handler, Crash Reconstructionist, Hazardous Materials Technician, Reserve Unit Commander, Shift Supervisor, Enforcement Division Captain, Firearms Instructor and Armorer, and two (2) terms as the elected Sheriff. …

Firearms training over the years included Remington, Glock, Colt, Smith and Wesson, H&K, and many others.  He is a Colt 1911 and AR Series, Glock and S&W Revolver and Auto-Pistol Armorer.

[575] Webpage: “P320 9MM 30 Round Extended Magazine.” Sig Sauer. Accessed June 24, 2022 at

<www.sigsauer.com>

[576] Article: “Aurora, Colo., Shooting Spree: A Day of Tears for Victims and of Twists in Case.” By David A. Fahrenthold and others. Washington Post, July 22, 2012. <www.washingtonpost.com>

The assault rifle, which is akin to an AR-15 and is a civilian version of the military’s M-16, could fire 50 to 60 rounds per minute and is designed to hold large ammunition magazines. The source said that Holmes allegedly had obtained a 100-round drum magazine that attached to the weapon but that such large magazines are notorious for jamming.

The law enforcement official said authorities think the gunman first used the shotgun — some victims have buckshot wounds — and then began using the assault rifle, which jammed. Then he resorted to the handgun.

[577] Article: “100-Round AR-15 Double Drum Magazines for Dummies.” By Robert Farago. The Truth About Guns, July 29, 2012. <www.thetruthaboutguns.com>

According to the latest info on the midnight movie massacre in Aurora, CO, spree killer James Holmes opened-up on the crowd with a Remington 870. After emptying the shotgun, he switched to a Smith & Wesson AR-15 equipped with a “double-drum” 100-round magazine. At some point during his heinous crime, the mag jammed. Holmes didn’t know how to clear his weapon. So he abandoned the rifle and switched to a Glock .40 caliber pistol. Police aren’t providing a total round count for the entire attack, but there’s no getting around it: the 100-round drum magazine’s failure saved lives. No surprise there. Double-drum magazines suck. Here’s why.

1. Double-drum magazines jam

Most semi-automatic AR-style (a.k.a. “assault”) rifles come equipped with 30-round magazines (except in states which already have a “high capacity” magazine ban, which limit owners to 10-round magazines). It’s a practical limitation. There’s a point after which magazine reliability decreases as the stored round count increases. Dramatically. One hundred rounds is well beyond this practical and literal point of no return.

[578]  Paper: “The Real Risks During Deadly Police Shootouts: Accuracy of the Naive Shooter.” By William J. Lewinski and others. International Journal of Police Science & Management, 2015. Pages 117–126. <www.researchgate.net>

Page 117:

This study aimed to examine the level of shooting accuracy demonstrated by law enforcement recruits upon completion of their law enforcement firearms training in comparison with novice shooters. One hundred and ninety-five male and 52 female law enforcement recruits volunteered. Participants were separated by firearms experience into the following groups: expert (completed law enforcement firearms course, n = 83), intermediate (recreational experience, n = 71) and novice (minimal/no experience, n = 93). All subjects were tested for accuracy at target locations from 3 to 75 ft.

Page 121:

Table I. Hit Accuracy by Group and Distance.

Distance

3–15 ft

18–45 ft

Rounds Fired

9

12

Group

Rounds Hit

%

Rounds Hit

%

Expert

7.89 (1.10)

87.68

4.55 (2.17)

37.95

Intermediate

7.52 (1.41)

83.57

4.90 (2.10)

40.85

Novice

6.78 (1.80)

75.39

3.31 (1.96)

27.6

Distance

60–75 ft

Overall

Rounds fired

6

27

Group

Rounds Hit

%

Rounds Hit*

%

Expert

0.84 (0.90)

14.06

13.30 (2.93)

49.26

Intermediate

0.76 (0.87)

12.68

13.01 (3.03)

48.2

Novice

0.33 (0.57)

5.56

10.51 (3.07)

39.91

*See Figure 2 and Discussion section for significance levels.

Pages 124–125:

Overall, the results of this study indicate that trained officers had a very small advantage in shooting accuracy over intermediate and novice shooters. Although the level of experience in intermediate shooters may have played a significant role in these findings, it is pertinent to remember that officers are expected to be able to perform with incredible precision and when their training, performance and accuracy fall short, it often results in injury, death or other severe consequences for themselves and others.

[579] “Annual Firearms Discharge Report.” New York City Police Department, November 9, 2011. <www1.nyc.gov>

Page 48:

On March 22, at 1225 hours, in the confines of the 44th Precinct, four uniformed officers responded to a 911 call about a dispute involving a firearm. Upon arrival at the Morrisania Air Rights Houses, the officers were met by a female complainant who had been assaulted and menaced at gunpoint by the adult son of an elderly woman for whom the complainant was a home attendant. Proceeding to the elderly woman’s apartment, the officers discovered that the subject, a male Hispanic, had retreated to a bedroom just past the living room. A second adult son informed the subject in English and Spanish that the police were present. One officer approached the bedroom door and forcibly opened it, at which point the subject opened fire with a .38 caliber Smith & Wesson revolver. The officer at the bedroom door was struck in the chest, but saved by his bullet resistant vest. As he fell back, injured, he returned fire, but was also fired upon again by the subject. In this second exchange he was struck twice in the lower abdomen, beneath his vest, and severely injured. He nevertheless returned fire, ultimately discharging all 16 rounds from his weapon, and the subject fell back into the bedroom. The three other officers, who were also in the line of fire, discharged two, one, and two rounds, respectively, as they dragged their wounded partner back to the living room and safety. At this point supervisors arrived on scene, and ordered the location locked down and the wounded evacuated. Emergency Services deployed mechanical means and a canine officer to assess the scene, and determined that the subject had been struck three times and killed. His revolver, with four spent rounds and a live round in the cylinder, was recovered. The subject had no arrest history.

Page 25: “Uniformed members of the service discharged a total of 259 rounds during ID-AC incidents in 2020….”

[580] “2020 Use of Force Report.” New York City Police Department, December 29, 2021. <www1.nyc.gov>

Page 19:

In 2020, there were 25 intentional firearm discharge-adversarial conflict incidents (ID-AC), involving 51 uniformed members of the service who discharged their firearms. These conflicts involved 28 subjects. In nine different ID-AC incidents, subjects discharged firearms directly at members of the service. As a result of the ID-AC incidents occurring in 2020, 12 subjects were shot, of whom eight died.

Page 25: “Uniformed members of the service discharged a total of 259 rounds during ID-AC incidents in 2020….”

[581] Paper: “Unusually Low Mortality of Penetrating Wounds of the Chest: Twelve Years’ Experience.” By Ashis K. Mandal, MD, and Sonny S. Oparah, MD. The Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, January 1989. Pages 119–125. <www.jtcvs.org>

Page 119:

Within a 12-year period ending in March 1984, 1109 patients with penetrating thoracic injuries were treated at King-Drew Medical Center located in south central Los Angeles. The average age of the patients was 28.1 years. There were 607 stab wounds and 502 gunshot wounds. … Of the 1109 patients, 105 had cardiac injuries. All patients with cardiac trauma underwent thoracotomy, and the mortality rate was 18.1%. Specifically, the mortality rate of gunshot wound of the heart 24.5 % and that of stab wound of the heart, 11.5%. In contrast, of the 1004 patients without cardiac injuries, only 115 required thoracotomy and the mortality rate in this group was 0.8% (8/1004). The mortality rate was 69.6% in patients who had a thoracotomy in the emergency room but only 2.8% in patients who had a thoracotomy in the operating room within the first 24 hours after admission. In the 242 patients who had associated abdominal injuries, the mortality rate was 2.1% (5/242\ as compared with 2.5% (22/867) for those who had isolated chest injuries. In the entire group, the incidence of complications was 5.1%, of which 1.8% were infectious complications. The presence of associated abdominal injuries did not influence the outcome. The mortality rate in noncardiac thoracic injuries is very low compared with that of cardiac injury. Because of the complexity of the injury, gunshot wound of the heart has the highest mortality rate. …

Victims of penetrating thoracic injuries in civilian life usually reach the hospital alive; however, as in wartime, lethal truncal injuries often result in death before a treatment unit is reached.6 In this article, we have reviewed our experience with penetrating chest injuries.

Patients and methods

Between April 1972 and March 1984, 1109 patients with penetrating injuries to the chest were hospitalized at Martin Luther King, Jr., Los Angeles County General Hospital. … The causes of injury were stab wounds in 607 patients and gunshot wounds in 502. One hundred five patients had cardiac injuries, 52 (45 male, 7 female) from stab wounds and 53 (50 male, 3 female) from gunshot wounds. The remaining 1004 patients had noncardiac chest injuries.

Page 121: “Table II. Mortality According to Type of Treatment … Patients … GSW [gun shot wounds] … Deaths/patients … Total [=] 19/502 … % [=] 3.8”

Page 122:

Table III. Mortality Rates

Type of Wounds

No. of Patients

No. of Deaths

Percent

Penetrating Wounds of Heart

Stab wounds

52

6

11.5

Gunshot wounds

53

13

24.5

Total

105

19

18.1

Noncardiac Penetrating Chest Wounds

Stab wounds

555

2

0.4

Gunshot wounds

449

6

1.3

Total

1004

8

0.8

[582] “Mass Shootings at Virginia Tech: Addendum to the Report of the Review Panel.” TriData Division, System Planning Corporation, November 2009. <scholar.lib.vt.edu>

Page 5 (of PDF):

On April 16, 2007, Virginia Tech experienced one of the most horrific events in American university history—a double homicide followed by a mass shooting that left 32 students and faculty killed, with many others injured, and many more scarred psychologically. …

Immediately after the incident Virginia Governor Timothy M. Kaine created a blue ribbon Review Panel, referred to as the Virginia Tech Review Panel, which consisted of nine members selected for their expertise in the areas that were to be investigated. The Review Panel’s mission was to assess the events leading to the shooting and how the incident was handled by the university and public safety agencies. …

In the two years since the Review Panel’s report was published, additional information has been placed in the public record….

In light of the new information presented to the families, and other information they found in the April 16 archive, several family members requested that additions and corrections be made to the Report. …

This Addendum responds to the comments and questions received from the families and Virginia Tech by correcting facts in the original report, including the timeline, and by adding additional information about the events leading to the incidents, the response to the incidents, and the aftermath of April 16.

Page 71: “Every person killed at Cho's hands on April 16 was shot with one of two firearms, a Glock 19 9mm pistol or a Walther P22 .22 caliber pistol.”

Page 74:

On March 22 and 23, he purchased a total of five 10-round magazines for the Walther on the Internet auction site eBay. In addition, Cho purchased several 15-round magazines along with ammunition and a hunting knife on March 31 and April 1 at local Wal-Mart and Dick's Sporting Goods stores. …

The panel also considered whether the previous federal Assault Weapons Act of 1994 that banned 15-round magazines would have made a difference in the April 16 incidents. The law lapsed after 10 years, in October 2004, and had banned clips or magazines with over 10 rounds. The panel concluded that 10-round magazines that were legal would have not made much difference in the incident. Even pistols with rapid loaders could have been about as deadly in this situation.

[583] Video: “Magazine Ban.” By Ken Campbell, Firearms101usa, February 23, 2013. <www.youtube.com>

Time marker 1:45–7:29:

Semi-automatic pistol demonstration by expert and novice shooters.

Our first comparison will be with semi-automatic pistols, and our demonstrators will be firing two 15-round standard capacity magazines out of their pistols. We’ll time the results of these aimed shots on multiple targets, and then we’ll do the next comparison with three 10-round capacity magazines, and then also just again for your education we will do five 6-round magazines so you can see what the timing sequence is there. …

So in review, firing the two 15-round magazines his time was 20.64 seconds. The three 10-round magazines at the three targets was 18.05 seconds, and then firing five 6-round magazines at the three targets was 21.45 seconds. …

So, to review, Christy’s times for two 15-round magazines was 22.9 seconds. The three 10-round magazines was 25.51 seconds, and the five 6-round magazines was 26.93 seconds.

[584] Webpage: “Ken Campbell, Chief Executive Officer, Gunsite Academy.” Gunsite Academy, Inc. Accessed May 28, 2022 at <www.gunsite.com>

Sheriff (Ret.) Ken Campbell had over 35 years of experience at the Boone County Indiana Sheriff’s Office in Central Indiana when he retired in 2014. His duties have included: Special Response Team (SWAT) Team Commander, K-9 Handler, Crash Reconstructionist, Hazardous Materials Technician, Reserve Unit Commander, Shift Supervisor, Enforcement Division Captain, Firearms Instructor and Armorer, and two (2) terms as the elected Sheriff. …

Firearms training over the years included Remington, Glock, Colt, Smith and Wesson, H&K, and many others.  He is a Colt 1911 and AR Series, Glock and S&W Revolver and Auto-Pistol Armorer.

[585] Video: “Magazine Ban.” By Ken Campbell, Firearms101usa, February 23, 2013. <www.youtube.com>

Time marker 7:33–9:34:

AR-15 20- and 10-round magazine demonstrations by expert and novice shooters.

Jim’s about to demonstrate our next drill, shooting an AR-15 with one 20-round magazine, and then we’ll do a comparison with two 10-round magazines. … Jim’s time was 12.16 seconds for that one 20-round magazine. … Jim’s time with the two 10-round magazines was 10.73 seconds. So actually, he was 1.43 seconds quicker with the reload. … Christy’s time with the one 20-round magazine was 12.26 seconds. … With Christy firing two 10-round magazines, her time took 14.63 seconds.

[586] Webpage: “Ken Campbell, Chief Executive Officer, Gunsite Academy.” Gunsite Academy, Inc. Accessed May 28, 2022 at <www.gunsite.com>

Sheriff (Ret.) Ken Campbell had over 35 years of experience at the Boone County Indiana Sheriff’s Office in Central Indiana when he retired in 2014. His duties have included: Special Response Team (SWAT) Team Commander, K-9 Handler, Crash Reconstructionist, Hazardous Materials Technician, Reserve Unit Commander, Shift Supervisor, Enforcement Division Captain, Firearms Instructor and Armorer, and two (2) terms as the elected Sheriff. …

Firearms training over the years included Remington, Glock, Colt, Smith and Wesson, H&K, and many others.  He is a Colt 1911 and AR Series, Glock and S&W Revolver and Auto-Pistol Armorer.

[587] Video: “Magazine Ban.” By Ken Campbell, Firearms101usa, February 23, 2013. <www.youtube.com>

Time marker 10:44:

New York Reload

… Jim just demonstrated what’s commonly referred to as a “New York Reload.” That is, in 18.8 seconds, he fired 30 rounds from a six-shot revolver, simply discarding it as an empty, and retrieving another from his book bag to carry on shooting. Now, if we compare that to our earlier demonstration, he fired two 15-round magazines from a Glock 9mm pistol in 22.9 seconds.”

[588] Webpage: “Ken Campbell, Chief Executive Officer, Gunsite Academy.” Gunsite Academy, Inc. Accessed May 28, 2022 at <www.gunsite.com>

Sheriff (Ret.) Ken Campbell had over 35 years of experience at the Boone County Indiana Sheriff’s Office in Central Indiana when he retired in 2014. His duties have included: Special Response Team (SWAT) Team Commander, K-9 Handler, Crash Reconstructionist, Hazardous Materials Technician, Reserve Unit Commander, Shift Supervisor, Enforcement Division Captain, Firearms Instructor and Armorer, and two (2) terms as the elected Sheriff. …

Firearms training over the years included Remington, Glock, Colt, Smith and Wesson, H&K, and many others.  He is a Colt 1911 and AR Series, Glock and S&W Revolver and Auto-Pistol Armorer.

[589] Speech: “Remarks by President Biden Announcing Actions to Fight Gun Crime and His Nominee for ATF [U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives] Director, Steve Dettelbach.” White House, April 11, 2022. <www.whitehouse.gov>

I was getting criticized when I first passed this law when I was a senator. And guess what? I was down in southern Delaware—they do a lot of hunting and fishing down there—and I was walking up one of the creek beds. And a guy standing said, “You want to take my gun?” I said, “I don’t want to take your gun.” He said, “Well, you’re telling me I can’t have more than X number of bullets in a—in a—in my gun.” And I said, “What—do you think the deer you’re hunting wear Kevlar vests? What the hell you need 20 bullets for? You must be a hell of a terrible shot.”

[590] Report: “The Biden Plan to End Our Gun Violence Epidemic.” Biden–Harris. Accessed April 13, 2022 at <joebiden.com>

Get weapons of war off our streets. The bans on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines that Biden, along with Senator Feinstein, secured in 1994 reduced the lethality of mass shootings. But, in order to secure the passage of the bans, they had to agree to a 10-year sunset provision and when the time came, the Bush Administration failed to extend them. As president, Biden will:

Ban the manufacture and sale of assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. Federal law prevents hunters from hunting migratory game birds with more than three shells in their shotgun. That means our federal law does more to protect ducks than children. It’s wrong. Joe Biden will enact legislation to once again ban assault weapons. This time, the bans will be designed based on lessons learned from the 1994 bans.

[591] Press release: “Menendez, Deutch Introduce Bill to Ban High-Capacity Gun Magazines.” U.S. Senator Bob Menendez, February 12, 2019. <www.menendez.senate.gov>

‘Gun violence is a national epidemic, and we must take action to protect the American people and prevent more heartbreaking tragedies,’ said Sen. Harris. ‘Banning high-capacity magazines that are designed to make guns more deadly would help to keep our friends and loved ones safe as we work towards putting an end to the scourge of mass shootings.’

[592] Article: “The Swerve to ‘Guns Everywhere’: A Legal and Empirical Evaluation.” By John J. Donohue. Law and Contemporary Problems, 2020. Pages 117–136. <scholarship.law.duke.edu>

Page 129: “Similarly, the empirical evidence suggests that restrictions on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines can reduce the rising death toll from mass shootings.44

Page 136: “Depending on what vision of the Second Amendment the Supreme Court ultimately adopts, there is a danger that a substantial price in lives and in increased violent crime will be paid if the court strikes down legislative restrictions on gun carrying outside the home and accelerates our growing mass shooting problem by overturning bans on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.”

[593] Webpage: “John J. Donohue III.” University of Stanford Law School. Accessed April 14, 2022 at <